WAIANAE, Hawaii (NNS) -- The U.S. Pacific Fleet (PACFLT) Band held a concert and educational clinics for the Moanalua Middle School's band camp at the Pu'u Kahea Conference Center on Oahu Jan. 30.
The PACFLT Band provides community outreach through musical entertainment and education which builds bridges between military and civilians.
"Today, we came out to Moanalua Middle School's band camp. They're out here for three days, as an intensive time for their band to get better and it's really quite special for us to be a part of that," said Musician 3rd Class Chris Garten, musical education outreach program assistant, assigned to PACFLT Band.
Between songs, the band members stopped to answer questions from the students.
"I got to learn new things and see the Navy Band perform," said Haley Woo, an 8th grader at Moanalua Middle School. "It was really helpful learning things from a professional - they really know what they're doing."
For Garten, the day was about being a role model and mentor for the students.
"When you're a kid, you don't always listen to what your teachers tell you," said Garten. "They're telling you the right stuff, but when you hear someone else tell you, or when you see a role model play for you, some of the stuff your teachers have been telling you click. It's incredible, especially for me, performing as a soloist and playing for the kids. They were engaged; they laughed. It feels like it came full circle. Something I wanted to do with my life is not just become a musician, but be a teacher and be a mentor as well. Hopefully I can have an impact on some of the students."
According to Garten, they've worked with the school's band a couple of times before.
"Before we came out here with the whole band, we sent two smaller groups-we sent the brass quintet and the woodwind sextet. It's cool because these students know us; we've talked with them before, we've worked with them in smaller settings as well."
Following the PACFLT Band's performance, the students participated in music clinics provided by the band to help further the students' education and training.
"The band has been tremendous," said Steven Agasa, half-time director at Moanalua Middle School. "I loved their performance; the students loved their performance. The questions that the students had for the band were terrific, and improved their education. Hopefully it will influence them to keep playing and maybe one day join a service band."
The PACFLT Band can be requested for events by the public.
"There's a form people can fill out," said Garten. "They can e-mail us, they can message us on Facebook and they can like us to see what we're doing. There's also a link to our webpage from there and we can be requested."
The PACFLT Band is based in Pearl Harbor and is dedicated to providing top quality music and entertainment in support of the U.S. Navy's retention and recruiting programs, and for internal and external public relations.
To find more information about the band, visit http://www.cpf.navy.mil/cpfband/
For more news from Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, Det. Hawaii, visit www.navy.mil/local/pacenhawaii/.