Robert Lozano will become the head band director, as announced on the CTJ Band Media Instagram. Lozano has served as head of percussion for the past six years.
He was officially notified he had been hired shortly before winter break, and the announcement was made on December 16.
“My familiarity with the program and the fact that I’ve been experienced, and I’ve been in this position a while, I believe was a part of the reason that I was chosen to be in this role,” Lozano said.
Originally, he was just responsible for percussion, concert band, and working with the middle schools. But now, his role has expanded to being in charge of all bands.
“All of them, but primarily the one that I’ll be conducting and rehearsing the most will be the Wind Ensemble, which is the top ensemble, the top group,” Lozano said. “And, I’ll also be in charge of the marching band in the fall and continue to manage the percussion section at the high school and middle schools.”
The tight-knit culture of the band has kept Lozano with the program, and he describes the students as family.
“They’re all so welcoming, and you can tell that they love music and they love being taught,” Lozano said. “It’s not like that everywhere, so this is a really special place to be.”
Now, he plans to build upon the success of the program, hoping to go to Grand Nationals and stand on the stage.
“I want to continue to have the band members go to different places and see different things, different parts of the country,” Lozano said. “And, I want to continue to have the band be successful and world renowned, as the program has been in the past few years.”
Lozano will face challenges that come with higher responsibility, such as finances, decision making, and making connections. But, he says continuing Lipman’s legacy will be most difficult.
“I think the most challenging thing will be whenever somebody leaves like Lipman, who has such a lasting legacy, is finding ways to continue that legacy, even though that person is gone, and being able to do it in my own way,” Lozano said.
But, Lozano has the other directors alongside him for support.
“I’ll still have people around me to help guide me and shape what the band is and the design of our marching shows and things like that,” Lozano said. “But, ultimately, I become the primary decision maker on those things.”
According to Lozano, the announcement was met with enthusiasm and praise that he is grateful for.
“I’ve been caught up on everything I need to know,” Lozano said. “I feel like my relationship with the staff here and with the students is really good, and I am just full of optimism for the future.”
Senior Kyson Moll is excited for the changes the band is undergoing and believes Lozano displays honorable leadership qualities.
“He’s a very compassionate person, and he’s very understanding when you go to him for things and that’s definitely a good characteristic of a leader,” Moll said. “I also think that he comes from a percussion background, and having a percussion background is something that’s unique and really valuable I think for him to be able to lead with that knowledge.”
Current band director Jarrett Lipman announced he would be leaving the campus at the end of January. According to student sources, his future plans involve running for local office.
Update: Jarrett Lipman officially announced his campaign for City Council District 9 on Facebook and Instagram on Jan. 10.