Music – Muse VIVO! Final Rehearsal

During this time of social separation for the good of the community, many future performances have been cancelled across the school district and this affected our students participating in Muse VIVO! Their March 24th forthcoming final concert was also cancelled.

So, on March 12th, they came to gether at their thrusday afternoon for one last rehearsal. We captured them performing for eachother and in making music together perhaps provide some solice in music in a time of great uncertainty.

We want to thank Ms. Beth Vanervennet, Ms. Stephanie Holmes, and Ms. Linda Green our stalwath leaders for providing this year’s musical selections that have elevated our students’ musical skills, self confidence and leadership yet again, and for their continued support and enrichment of our music students accross the the district.

To next year!

Please enjoy the videos captured at the links below:

Florence Price – String Quartet 2nd Mvt.

Brahms – Serenade No 1 in D, Mvt 5- Scherzo Allegro (see below for shortcut)

Georg Philip Telemann – Viola Concerto in G, Mvt. 3 -Andante

Soon See Newbold – Orion and the scorpion



Music – Music Department Fundraiser – POSTPONED


MARCH 11, 2020

According to a directive issued by the district this afternoon there cannot be any off-site fundraising events until after spring break. Because of this we will have to postpone our event at Geoffrey’s Inner Circle that was scheduled for Friday, March 13. 

We hope to reschedule the event in late April or May. All tickets sold so far will be honored at that time. If we are not able to reschedule, we will refund patrons for tickets already purchased. 

Ted Allen

Music teacher
Oakland Technical High School

The music department’s annual fundraising event is quickly approaching on 3/13, please join us. This year we want to provide support for our future and the expansion of the program,  and in that vain are  raising money for new music storage lockers. Please consider joining us in supporting the performing arts at Tech, and in particular the Music Department.

You can also contribute to our fundraising efforts at this GoFundMe campaign.

Music – Orchestra Festival 03/04

On March 04, the OUSD Orchestra Festival took place at Roosevelt Middle School. Nine schools, six choirs over 400 student musicians from both High Schools and Middle Schools across the district participated at the festival. After a pre-performance rehearsal of the all-student pieces, under the baton of Maestro Michael Morgan of the Oakland Symphony, the students were provided with dinner.

The Oakland Tech orchestra, this year 30 musicians strong, performed the Grand Canyon Suite by Ferde Grofe, arranged by Douglas E. Wagner. We also have several musicians that joined the MUSE VIVO Orchestra for their rendition of Hungarian Dances of Bela Bartock. And, finally, our musicians joined the the OUSD Grand Orchestra and Choirs for a beautiful rendition of Glory – arranged by Mr. Allen – and, Ode to Joy, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony.

We want to thank Roosevelt MS for, once again hosting our schools for this yearly festival and showcase our students’ talents; Maestro Morgan and the Oakland Symphony for supporting music education in OUSD; The VIVO orchestra mentors; Mr. Allen for working with our students and re-establishing a strong and thriving music program at Tech, and all the parents that support our music programs throughout the district and at Oakland Tech.

Please enjoy the videos at the following links.

Grand Canyon Suite
On A Clear Day
Hungarian Dances (Muse Vivo)
Finale Glory (see shortcut below)
Finale 9th – Ode to Joy (see shortcut below)

Music – Tech musicians at Muse VIVO concert

On Sunday, February 16th, our Oakland Tech students that participate in Muse VIVO – the city-wide program for orchestra sponsored and supported by Oakland Symphony – joined the Oakland Youth Orchestra, under the direction of Omid Zoufonoun, the principal conductor for the Oakland Youth Orchestra. The students from Oakland Tech are: George Kong (Viola), Tiffany Le (Violin 1), Timothy Mai (Viola).

This is the third year in a row that Oakland Symphony has provided opportunities for these musicians to participate in side-by-side performances. The combined orchestras provided a moving and energetic performance of Arturo Marquez’ Danzon No.2

The Muse VIVO orchestra is composed of students from Oakland schools and are under the extraordinary batons of Ms. Stephanie Holmes (Edna Brewer MS), Ms. Beth Vandervennet (Oakland Symphony), and Ms. Linda Green (Thornhill Elementary).

The Muse VIVO orchestra will be performing at the Orchestra Festival on March 4th, and at their concert at Oakland High School on March 24th. Come listen and support the work of these wonderful young musicians.

The performance below was generously provided by Pascal St Gerard, Muse VIVO parent.

Please enjoy the performance!

Music – Summer Playing Opportunities

We know our students are often very busy during the summer with internships and family vacations and, most bands and orchestras do not meet in the summer. However, there are other opportunities to play. Here are some; some of these programs require applications to be filed by early March, some even earlier, so if at all interested, investigate now. However, if you’d like to find local places to refine, or continue to play your instrument or learn a new one here are some alternatives:

For Students/Kids of all ages:
Cazadero Music Camp: Orchestra, Band, and Jazz – mid June through late August: HTTP://WWW.CAZADERO.ORG

Laney Summer Music Program
Meets on the college campus at the Laney College Music Department and the Laney Theater are back to back and all large rehearsals will take place right on the stage that the performances will occur.
Laney Jazz Intensive: (all instruments)- Monday, June 15th – Friday, June 25th, 2020
Wind Ensemble: (wind instruments)-TBD
String Orchestra: (string instruments)-TBD
Laney Summer Music Program
Meets on the college campus at the Laney College Music Department and the Laney Theater are back to back and all large rehearsals will take place right on the stage that the performances will occur.
Laney Jazz Intensive: (all instruments)- Monday, June 15th – Friday, June 25th, 2020
Wind Ensemble: (wind instruments)-TBD
String Orchestra: (string instruments)-TBD

For all musicians:
A five day Chamber Music Workshop is in Berkeley at the Crowden School, July 29-August 2

Three week-long CSU Humboldt Chamber Music Workshops – starting June 28, July 5, and July 12:

A week-long Ashland (Oregon) Chamber Music Workshop – starting July 12. (Same time & town as the Shakespeare Festival)

Two week-long California Capital (CSU Sacramento) Chamber Music Workshops – starting July 26 and August 2.

The Community Women’s Orchestra in Oakland for several years has run sight reading sessions for full orchestra during the summer. Check their web site as summer approaches for details. The 2019 schedule and repertoire are here:

For Brass there are the two week-long Humboldt Brass Chamber Music Workshops, starting July 19 and again July 26:

Additionally, the Amateur Chamber Music Network has an online guide for playing opportunities, not only for chamber music, (double reeds, clarinets, flutes, French horns, strings and piano) but also for other genres: jazz, classical, folk, vocal, etc.:

And check the Amateur Music Network’s listings for music opportunities as summer approaches:

For Concert Wind Bands
I know of three local Community Bands that meet during the summer:
– The Urquhart Memorial Concert Band, Wednesday nights in Oakland:
– The Walnut Creek Concert Band, Tuesday nights in Lafayette:
– The Diablo Regional Concert Band, Thursdays nights in Martinez:

The Find-A-(Concert) Band Directory, published by the Association of Concert Bands, locates concert bands and is here: It can be searched by zip, e.g.

For Jazz
A week-long Jazz Camp West for kids and adults in La Honda, CA, June 20:

Stanford Jazz Institute offers various programs throughout the summer; kids’ program are also available, starting July 6 thru the end of July:

It’s not clear when the UC San Diego Jazz Camp will run this year:

The California Jazz Conservatory in Berkeley offers summer workshops for kids and adults; schedule not yet available:

Similarly, San Francisco Jazz:

Downbeat magazine’s March (paper) issue lists jazz workshop opportunities:

Music – UC Berkeley Performance and Workshop

The Orchestra will attend a performance and workshop with Amir El Saffar and the River of Sound Orchestra.
Students will travel via walking and BART.

Leave OT 9:00 am and return 4:00 pm.
Attire: OT Music T shirts

More details will provided by Mr. Allen in the classroom. 

We are in need of chaperones, please return  field trip paperwork on time, and consider being a chaperone for the field trip.

Music – OUSD Jazz Festival 2020


Picture 1 of 6


On February 4, the OUSD Jazz Festival was welcomed at the Oakland Tech HS Auditorium along with jazz bands from Claremont, Roosevelt, Bret Harte, Edna Brewer and Montera Middle Schools, and the Oakland, Skyline and Tech High Schools. Additionally numbers were performed by the Laney College Big Band and the Oakland East Side All Stars jazz ensembles.

The evening was full of music and well attended. We want to thank our OUSD music programs’ and Oakland Tech music supporters, and Mr. Allen for leading our musicians in a great performance. We also want to extend a great big thank you to our Tech Techies for providing stage, sound and lighting direction and management throughout the event.

Here for your enjoyment videos of Oakland Tech’s Jazz Ensemble:
First Circle
OUSD Very Big Band


Music – Folsom Jazz Festival 2020

On Saturday, January 25, 2020, the student musicians from four Oakland bands travelled to Folsom High School for the 31st Annual Folsom Jazz Festival. The groups participating included the Edna Brewer Jazz Band and the Oakland East Side All Star Ensemble, both under the direction of Mr. Zachary Pitt-Smith; the Oakland Technical High School Jazz Band under the direction of Mr. Ted Allen and the student-directed Oakland Tech Monday Combo. Three out of the four Oakland bands received unanimous Superior ratings (or 1s) from their adjudicators’ panels.

The Folsom Jazz Festival is highly competitive venue. The Competition routinely attracts some of the top bands in the state such as Northgate H.S. (Walnut Creek,) Berkeley H.S., Downey H.S. and Rio Americano in Sacramento.

1st Piece: Wiggle Walk by Benny Golson
2nd Piece: Desert Flower by David P. Jones
3rd Piece: 4 on 6 by Wes Montgomery

Music – Jazz Band at Basketball Games

Our Basketball season is getting started quickly! The Jazz Band will be performing at all home basketball games.
Our dates are:

OT vs. OH Men’s Basketball – Jan. 17th – 5PM
OT vs. Skyline Women’s Basketball – Jan. 29th – 5PM Cancelled
OT vs Fremont Men’s Basketball – Feb. 12th – 6PM

Students please be on the lookout for communications from Mr. Allen.

Parents we will need your support for Set-up/tear-down, food and drinks for our musicians – Please sign up here.