2019 Staff

Samantha Dobson

Samantha Dobson

Sammie currently resides in Long Beach, CA where she is actively pursuing degrees in Dance and Kineseology. She’s a full-time dance teacher, guard director, visual instructor, and choreographer.

Sammie has been the Dance Guard director at Redondo Union High School going on 5 years. Presently, she also is a visual instructor for the world class indoor percussion group, Pulse Percussion, and teaches dance in the South Bay at The School of Dance and Music. Sammie actively designs and choreographs nationally for groups including State Champs Gibson County HS in TN. Previous teaching experience consists of movement designer and visual instructor for the Spirit of Atlanta, assistant color guard caption head at Pacific Crest, Director of Choctawhatchee World Guard, and choreographer/technician for O2 Independent World.

Sammie’s WGI performance experience consists of five years with the O foundation in Dayton, OH. She began in 2010 with Open Class Champions O2 and then spent ’11-’14 with Onyx World to earn two World Championship titles and two second place finishes. Sammie spent the five summers of ’08-’12 performing with the Teal Sound Drum & Bugle Corps where she served as color guard captain for her final three years. Sammie aged out in ’12 with the Colts Drum & Bugle Corps.

In her free time, she enjoys reading, playing tennis, and spending time with her cat Stella.

Matthew Distante

Matthew Distante

Matthew is a visual/music instructor based out of Long Beach, California. He has marched Pacific Crest 2016-2017 and the Santa Clara Vanguard 2018-2019. He is currently attending California State University Long Beach as a music education/tuba performance double major. He designs and teaches at multiple high schools in southern California and also is in charge of visual design for Long Beach City College’s Viking Show Band. He has also marched several years of indoor percussion, most notably playing electric bass for Vessel in 2018 and being the guitar/visual soloist for POW Percussion in 2019.

Evan Turner

Evan Turner

Evan Turner was born and raised in Windber, Pennsylvania. He started the activity of colorguard by competing with his middle school and high school Colorguards from 2002-2008.

He continued marching in the activity for both DCI with the Cadets from 2009-2012 and WGI with Blessed Sacrament from 2010-2017.

Evan graduated with his BFA in Modern Dance Performance from the University of the arts in 2013. Since then he has been teaching and dancing both nationally and internationally. After many amazing opportunities from Arcos Dance, Contemporarily Out of Order Company, multiple ships for Norwegian Cruise Lines and more, Evan moved to Los Angeles on January 1st 2019 to further his career in dance but also to grow in circus arts.

He is now training with Kinetic Theory Circus Arts pre pro Troupe, and is dancing with the Volo cast / second company of DIAVOLO. He is super excited to be joining the Redondo team, and can’t wait to see what they create together!


Robin Truong

Robin Truong discovered her love for the marching arts in high school, and continued to pursue that passion at Pacific Crest Drum and Bugle Corps from 2013-17. While there, she played baritone and euphonium and served as the horn sergeant for two years. She aged out of drum corps with the 19-time World Champion Blue Devils in 2019. In 2015, she earned a silver medal with the Orange County Independent Winds Ensemble as a flute player in their inaugural year. Robin’s experience also includes two seasons of WGI in the visual ensembles at Dark Sky Percussion in 2018 and RCC Indoor Percussion in 2019.

A recent graduate of UC San Diego, Robin has been a visual technician/choreographer for several high schools in that area, but she currently resides in Laguna Niguel and teaches in the greater Orange County area. She is excited to join the Seahawk family and continue passing on the knowledge she has garnered from the incredible instructors she has had the opportunity to learn from throughout her marching career.

Thomas

Thomas Kurator

Thomas Kurator is an active percussion educator from the Inland Empire area, and is a new addition to the staff for the 2019 season.

His past marching experience includes the Blue Devils Drum & Bugle Corps (2013-2015) and the Blue Stars Drum & Bugle Corps (2016).

Additionally, he has performed with RCC Marching Tigers, and eventually RCC Indoor Percussion (2014-2017), where he served as the section leader for his last two seasons.

Everett Kim

Everett Kim

Everett Kim is a musician, composer, and teacher from Manhattan Beach, California. After graduating from Mira Costa High School in 2016, Everett went on to major in Film Scoring at Berklee College of Music in Boston and is near the end of completing his degree.

Back in 2015, Everett started his drum corps career with Pacific Crest at the age of 16. The next year, Everett joined the Blue Devils for the following four years, winning two world championship titles with the corps during that time. In 2016 and 2017, he was a trumpet player in the Blue Devils Hornline and in 2018, he became an assistant drum major. In 2019 for his ageout, he served as the head drum major of the Blue Devils and helped lead the corps to their 19th world championship.

Everett has a passion for teaching and inspiring young musicians and performers through sharing his own personal experiences and knowledge. He is honored and excited to join the Redondo Union High School team!

Rick

Rick Kodani, Visual Caption Head

My name is Rick Kodani. I am an alumni of Redondo Union High School (Class of 2011), Pacific Crest Drum & Bugle Corps (2012-2013), the Blue Devils Drum & Bugle Corps (2014-2015), and Pulse Percussion (2016). During my years marching, I played Baritone Saxophone (2008), Trumpet (2009), and Mellophone (2011-2015). Additionally, I was cast as the character in the 2016 Pulse Percussion program entitled, “Brother.”

My teaching experience includes RUHS Marching Band and Dance Guard (2011-2013), Mira Costa Marching Band (2013-2017), and Blue Devils “B” (2017).

I have been lucky enough to win a few awards during my time performing, including: 2010 SCJA Champion 3a, 2014 World Champion, 2015 World Champion, 2015 Blue Devils’ Outstanding Visual Award, 2016 WGI Percussion World Champion, and 2016 Pulse Percussion Outstanding Performer Award among others.

I am very excited to be back at my Alma Mater teaching the very program the helped me grow into the performer and person I am today.

Christian Hansen, Battery Caption Head

Based in Fountain Valley, California, Christian is the battery caption head at Redondo Union High School. He is also a battery instructor at Fountain Valley High School and the Los Alamitos Jr. Griffin Drum Line.

Christian has performed with many ensembles across California and the United States, including Pacific Crest, Dark Sky Percussion, The Blue Stars, Pulse Percussion, Sidle Entertainment, and the LA Chargers Thunderbolts Drumline.

Christian earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Science from California State University Long Beach.

Lily Funakoshi

My name is Lily Funakoshi. I am an alumni of RUHS (class of 2018) and had the pleasure of participating in the marching band (marimba), indoor percussion, and other concert bands during my four years. Outside of high school, I have played classical piano for 14 years, and was a member of Vessel Indoor Percussion (marimba) for 2018-19. I currently attend UC Irvine majoring in urban studies.