Meet the Soloists

Band features five soloists in current show


Sahnam Mohabbat

The band sits in the stands during a football game.

Oakville’s award winning band is known for its amazing sound and fantastic visuals. This marching season the band has performed for several competitions and placed highly in every single one. What makes the OHS band so successful? Some say that it’s the well chosen soloists that really make the band stand out. These soloists include Sam Wescoat (11), Jared Hasty (11), Max Jonak (11), Emre Aka (12) and Riley Hughes (11). OHS band director Theron Perkowski says “They are all outstanding leaders and musicians with a desire to achieve musically and master their instruments”, and they proved it during this marching season.

Jared Hasty

Q: What instrument do you play?

A: I play french horn in concert band and mellophone in marching band.

Q: Is being a soloist difficult?

A: It takes a lot of preparation so I think as long as you prepare and you know what you’re getting into it’s a lot easier. If you come in unprepared then it’s definitely a lot more difficult.

Q: What aspect of being a soloist do you enjoy the most?

A: I just like the feeling of just getting up there and playing in front of everybody. I think it’s really cool. I think I get to kind of show everybody what I’ve learned and what I can do. It’s just really cool to make beautiful music in front of a bunch of people.

Sam Wescoat

Q: What instrument do you play?

A: Mellophone.

Q: What’s being a soloist like?

A: In the beginning, it was a little bit scary because you’re standing in front of everybody and you have to not screw up. But you have to get in the mindset of it’s just you playing with the other three guys up there and you can’t pay too much attention to the crowd. So I just stay calm, black out the crowd and do what I do.

Q: What aspect of being a soloist do you enjoy most?

A: It’s nice to be such a big part of one section of the show. I like having such an impact on the effect of the show.

Emre Aka 

Q: What instrument do you play?

A: Tenor Saxophone.

Q: What was the process for becoming a soloist like?

A: Mostly competition with the person a grade above me and wanting to win. And then I guess the leftover impression the band teacher had of me transferred over to my senior year, which got me my spot.

Q: What does practice/rehearsal usually look like for you?

A: It’s usually just a lot of grinding, just you have to keep on going and going and going, and you can’t give up.

The marching band performs at Bands of America Championships. (Photo Courtesy of Samantha Brummett)

Riley Hughes

Q: What instrument do you play? 

A: I play the trumpet.

Q: What is being a soloist like?

A: Well, because of the way my solo works, I stand in place while I do my solo. So while everyone else is learning drill and how to move, and where they move, I kind of just stay in place. 

Q: What aspect of being a soloist do you enjoy most?

A: Probably being appreciated for the hard work I put on the instrument, and that’s really one of the biggest things. 

Max Jonak

Q: What instrument do you play?

A: Trumpet.

Q: What is it like being a soloist?

A: You would think there’s a lot more pressure, but to me, it’s just kind of the same as anything else. Just kind of holding your own and doing your job.

Q: What aspect of being a soloist do you enjoy the most?

A: Probably being able to have complete control over a section of our show. So that I know it’s in good hands with myself versus having to rely on a hundred other kids to do it the right way.