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It's About Tradition: Daniel

Daniel (Class of 2020)

Daniel is a performing jack-of-all-trades. He got involved in music in elementary school at Terrace Park Elementary, when his brother convinced him the trumpet was fun. “I can’t remember when I started liking music more, appreciating it more, but I started singing in 5th grade and shortly after that I realized I was decent at it.”

He then got involved in the 6th grade musical “Wizard of Oz” as the cowardly lion and then held the second biggest role of the 7th grade production of “Murder by Indecision.”

He now plays trumpet in the marching band and is the lead singer for the Rock Band master class.

“At the end of 8th grade, as they were preparing us for high school, we received a form about these extra courses, the Master Class series. Rock Band caught my eye and sounded fun. I was really into rock music and singing and thought I would like to learn to play guitar and drums. I’ve loved singing for a few years and the idea of participating with other people and playing the music that I really like sounded appealing and rewarding.”

The band has performed at a few events and has a lot it plans for more performances – from school to community events.

But Daniel hasn’t just been involved in music in school. He went to Washington, D.C. with his 8th grade class and “won” the Chopped Cooking Challenge expedition. “I really like the Chopped Cooking Challenge because I’ve always liked cooking and the freedom you have to make food the way you like it to be when you make food for yourself.”

He also contributes to the community in many other ways. He volunteers for the children's program at SonRise Church, and has worked for the past few summers with underprivileged kids and children of refugees through the mission-focused summer camp MFuge. “I like seeing new places, meeting new people and helping refugees and underprivileged kids.”

With a favorite music genre of pop-punk and just like his favorite bands, Green Day and Blink 182, this guy has a lot of range, depth and surprises to him too.  And he puts in the work.

“There are a couple of people in Rock Band who are graduating this year, so we’re hoping there will be more people from the high school or junior high who are interested in it. If anyone wants to join, they can…they just need to put in the work and contribute.”

As for the future, Daniel said he hasn’t really thought about it yet, although he really enjoyed learning about genetics and biology in Mrs. Long’s class. And even though he feels he got a lot out of that class, he said the biggest influence in his school career thus far was his kindergarten teacher, Jane Concannon, who “taught me you could do anything if you put your mind to it.”

“If you think you can do, you can probably do it. As long as you put in the work, you’ll be rewarded. Practice makes perfect."