The Lancer

The Lancer

The Lancer

Controversy Brews Over Barred Owl Removal to Save Spotted Owl
Controversy Brews Over Barred Owl Removal to Save Spotted Owl
Kimberly Jerez, The Lancer Staff ♦ May 2, 2024

Wildlife officials are in a bitter dispute over the removal of the invasive Barred Owl from forests along the West Coast to save the Northern...

TOHS Springs to Europe over the Break
TOHS Springs to Europe over the Break
Alyssa Kiszczak, Managing Editor ♦ April 22, 2024

The scary sight of the most monstrous cheese you can imagine was sitting in the display case, calling their names. The stench was wretched, like...

Morge returns to mound after road trip of a lifetime
Morge returns to mound after road trip of a lifetime
Lilah Swaving, The Lancer Staff ♦ April 16, 2024

It finally became unbearable for Daniel Morge when the Thousand Oaks High baseball team went to go sing the national anthem, and he couldn’t...

Kirby pulls off rare double play for TO
Kirby pulls off rare double play for TO
Riley Brown, The Lancer Staff ♦ April 16, 2024

Junior Claire Kirby leads the TO softball team as not only an elite pitcher but also as an elite hitter. But she plays a third role that is...

The Great Outdoors
The Great Outdoors
Alan Ko, Guest Writer ♦ April 16, 2024

Outdoor school counseling might not sound like the best thing to do with a packed schedule but it is arguably one of the best experiences that...

Off-Campus Pass
Momo Sonoda, Editor-In-Chief ♦ April 16, 2024

Celebrities catastrophic effect on the environment
Joseph Goodnight, Opinion Editor ♦ March 27, 2024

With our current understanding of the climate crisis, it’s safe to say that everyone is trying to be more sustainable for the sake of the environment,...

Lancer-to-Los Robles volunteer system stays strong
Lancer-to-Los Robles volunteer system stays strong
Kimberly Jerez, The Lancer Staff ♦ March 27, 2024

Los Robles Regional Medical Center benefits from the varied talents and experiences that volunteers offer, ranging from high school students...

Time T.O. Vote
Time T.O. Vote
Kailah Spencer, The Lancer Staff ♦ March 27, 2024

Senior Maya Campo turns 18 in April, and she is ready to make her voice heard this November. As the presidential primary election nears, seniors...

Going Digital: The SAT’s New Normal
Going Digital: The SAT’s New Normal
Kailah Spencer, The Lancer Staff ♦ March 27, 2024

Many Lancers students are familiar with the SAT; a paper test with over a hundred questions of varying difficulty. Now, CVUSD is introducing...

Around the Business Table
Around the Business Table
Julia Pineda-Dominguez, The Lancer Staff ♦ March 27, 2024

The Majors program provides students with the opportunity to speak with mentors in many different careers. The program consists of monthly meetings...

Moreno heads to Washington
Moreno heads to Washington
Aandrea Pineda-Dominguez, News Editor ♦ March 27, 2024

It was finally over. The bell gave its shrieking cry and off went hundreds of students to enjoy their freedom, at least for a moment. For...

TO Acorn With Permission
Lancers lose a forever friend
Jake Bradley, Sports Editor ♦ March 27, 2024

Bill Gemberling has worn many hats at Thousand Oaks High: student, teacher, coach, sports announcer. But taxi driver? “I was one of (Brett...

Unexpected La Reina closure leads to transfers
Abigail Kerns, Assistant News Editor ♦ March 27, 2024

escribing how La Reina families felt upon receiving the news that their school, which opened its doors in 1964, will be closing at the end of...

New MegaMind TV and Movie Sequel Release
New MegaMind TV and Movie Sequel Release
Joseph Goodnight, Opinion Editor ♦ February 20, 2024

In March of this year, Dreamworks is set to release a Peacock exclusive TV show and movie sequel to the beloved 2010 MegaMind movie. The trailer...

From the Dust

From+the+Dust

Last summer, junior Jackson Waters went to the Oregon Bach Festival Composer Symposium at the University of Oregon, a program usually reserved for college level composers. However, Waters was the exception. After a summer of working among college students, Wyant Morton, conductor of Arete Vocal Ensemble and long-time family friend of Waters, found out that he as a highschooler got into the program and asked Jackson to write something for Arete.

Waters, a member of TOHS band, got into composing at a young age.

“I started fooling around on trumpet and piano and writing melodies, and I just really enjoyed it. I didn’t think too much of it,” Waters said. “My first piece was in honor of my sister’s friend who committed suicide a few years back, and my freshman year the TOHS band premiered it. That’s when I really wanted to start composing.”

Because he needed to write a choral piece for Arete, Waters knew he would need lyrics, which he had no experience writing, so he turned to sophomore Madeline Biggs for help.

“I used to write a lot when I was little… As I grew up I didn’t tell anyone that I liked to write because I thought it was stupid but I would do it anyway because I couldn’t stop myself,” Biggs said.

While Biggs has had the tendency to gravitate toward essay writing, her recent collaboration with Waters inspired her to delve into poetry.

“It’s a nice way of expressing yourself when music isn’t the biggest thing in your life,” Biggs said.

The piece draws inspiration from the destruction the Woolsey fire brought. Biggs started writing once the fires started to calm down, but she needed a title. The first thing that came to Waters’ mind was “Dust.”

“Immediately my mind went to the fires and what had just happened in our community,” Biggs said.

The piece is four stanzas long with the first two focusing on the destruction and mourning the losses the fires brought. The second two stanzas, however, focus on rebuilding.

“One person stands up and they turn around and help the next person stand up, and finally everyone that is left behind is healing,” Biggs said. “Sure, we did lose a lot, but … everyone needs to believe in each other in order to heal fully and now the hills are green and people are building houses again. It’s really inspiring to see that what I wrote about is what I can see in our community now.”

The first time Waters heard his piece come to life from paper was at a rehearsal with the ensemble.

“When I was going to the rehearsal I was incredibly nervous because I wasn’t sure how it was going to sound, and I didn’t know much about the ensemble. Once I heard them play the first couple of notes I just relaxed, and then I got really happy. I actually could not stop smiling; it was really cool,” Waters said.

However, Biggs did not hear it until Sunday’s performance.

“It was insane. I didn’t know what I was supposed to expect. I knew it would be good because [Waters] is a good composer, but I never expected it to be as intense as it was,” Biggs said.

In musical terms, the first half of the piece is in D-minor while the second half in in F major to represent the change in tone.

“Everything is becoming good again and I really wanted to implement that thought into the music” Waters said.

Both Waters and Biggs agree that the process of creating Dust was intense but well worth the outcome.

“Writing,” Waters said, “It doesn’t come quickly.”

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