Pioneer High School Jazz Program
Introducer: Tom Millard
David A. Leach
Pioneer High School, Director of Bands (2002-present)
David A. Leach has been Director of Bands at Ann Arbor Pioneer High School since 2002. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Music Education at Eastern Michigan University, where he studied conducting with Professor Russell Reed and Dr. Max Plank. He began his teaching career at Ypsilanti High School in 1988 and spent fourteen years there before coming to Ann Arbor. He was appointed Chair of the Pioneer High School Performing Arts Department in 2006, and Fine Arts Department Chair in 2013.
Leach sustains the long tradition of quality performance and repertoire in the Pioneer Bands. During his eleven years at Pioneer, his Symphony and Concert Bands have received consistent top ratings at district and national festivals. His Symphony, Concert, and Jazz Bands have won overall festival championships at every national event entered. Leach wrote curriculum for and introduced a ninth-grade Jazz Lab, increased student numbers, and enhanced his students’ personal success in music with a high percentage of his graduates going on to study for careers in music education and performance. Under his baton, the Pioneer Symphony Band has performed twice at Carnegie Hall, the Mid-Europe Music Conference in Schladming Austria, and performed on tour in China. In 2014 the Pioneer Symphony was selected a New Music National Winner in the Mark of Excellence National Wind Band Honors project.
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