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Student Star: Matt Davis
Posted on February 4, 2011
Multi-Talented Sundevils’ Drum Major Can Fix Anything, Planning Theater Production Career
Matt Davis has more than a few interests and talents.
A senior at Mt. Carmel High School, Davis is perhaps most known to students and their parents as Drum Major for the Marching Sundevils Band. In this capacity, he provides leadership and guidance to the band, as well as boosting morale among the members.
“I was selected at the end of my junior year after competing against peers in marching ability and leadership and completing an interview by the directors,” Davis said. “I am very honored to have been selected to be drum major. I really enjoy the challenges of leadership and competition. During a parade, I march in front giving the band commands regarding when to play, what time to keep and when and where to march.”
His skills in this capacity resulted in being named the San Diego Drum Major Academy’s “Most Outstanding Drum Major”.
Interest in music began early for the 17-year-old senior at the Rancho Penasquitos school. “I’ve played musical instruments for as long as I can remember,” Davis said. “I joined 5th grade band playing the trumpet, and I’d played the piano and guitar before that. And then I learned the drums going into 7th grade because my church – Penasquitos Lutheran Church – was looking for a drummer.”
But for Davis – the son of Mike and Pam Davis of Sabre Springs – music is only a part of his well-rounded life and experiences.
Not only is he a member of the National Honor Society, he also is an Eagle Scout, a Distinguished Member of the International Thespian Society, a Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do, and a High School AP Scholar.
In addition to following politics closely, he also considers himself a “go-to and fix-it geek” when it comes to computers. “In fact, I can work on just about anything techie,” Davis said. “My friends often call me ‘Doc’ because I can fix anything (and my initials are MD).”
And that ability is what connects Davis to his true passion: Theater and technical production.
“My main interest is in theater production. The first time I walked into Peñasquitos Lutheran Church, I looked behind me up at the sound booth,” he said. “I went up to the pastor (I was around 8 years old) and asked him when I could work up there.”
The church’s pastor indicated Davis needed to be at least 13, and the Sunday after his 13th birthday Davis began learning to design and run sound. And then, out of sheer interest, he learned to design lights and stage manage – and eventually started his own company, called Technical Production Management.
“I started my company about two years ago. Clients call me when they have an event that requires lighting, sound, or visual effect needs,” Davis said. “For example, a dance school might hire me for their holiday show. They might ask me to set up the stage, plan and rent unique lighting (strobes, spotlights, colored filters, etc.) to highlight their dancers as well as provide a microphone for introductions and arrange their music.”
After assessing the client’s needs and making a proposal, Davis then hires technicians for the operations.
Davis hopes to pursue his theater passion after graduating high school later this year. “I’m planning to attend college – my top choices are USC, UCLA and NYU – to continue to further my career as a theater technician,” he said. “One of the professors when I was visiting colleges said something that really struck me, ‘Your profession should be something that doesn’t feel like work.’”
And since theater and stage production is a true passion, Davis indicated that’s his future direction. “I can’t imagine something more enjoyable to do for a living, so that’s where I’m headed,” he said.