Featured Ensemble Director

Rich Guillen

Arlington High School (NY), LaGrangeville, NY

Richard F. Guillen, a native of Kearny, New Jersey, received his BS in Music Education from Kean University of New Jersey in 1989 and his MS in Music Education from Western Connecticut State University in 2002. Since 1997, Mr. Guillen has been a music educator and director of bands at Arlington High School, in the Arlington Central School District, located in Dutchess County, NY. He has previously served as a music educator and director of bands at Central Regional High School in Bayville, NJ from 1989 to 1997. Mr. Guillen’s current responsibilities in the Arlington Central School District include serving as the district’s Music Coordinator as well as director of the Arlington High School Wind Ensemble, the most advanced of the school’s five concert bands. Mr. Guillen is also the director of Jazz programs at Arlington High School, serving as the director of the award winning Arlington Jazz Machine, the most advanced of the school’s three Jazz Ensembles. He also assists with the other two high school jazz ensembles as well as many chamber ensembles and teaches instrumental music lessons. Mr. Guillen’s marching, concert and jazz ensembles have consistently received many awards and accolades under his direction. His 9th Grade and Symphonic Bands have received several “Gold with Distinction” awards at NYSSMA state music festivals. The Jazz Machine performs annually at local and regional festivals as well as hosting its popular Jazz Cabaret night. The Jazz Machine has also attended the prestigious Berklee Jazz Festival in Boston 19 times. In Large Ensemble Class I, which is the largest schools category, the Jazz Machine has won first place at the Berklee Jazz Festival 4 times and, since 2007, and has placed in the top 3 every year.

From 1997 – 2005, Mr. Guillen was the director of the Arlington Admiral Marching Band. Under his direction, the Admiral Band consistently ranked as one of the top 5 bands in New York State and in the Northeast. In 2000, Bandworld Magazine named the Admiral Marching Band as one of the “Top 100″ bands in the USA. In 2004, the Admiral Marching Band won the NY State Field Band Conference National Class and overall state championship (a first in the band’s history). In 2005, the band was named US Scholastic Band Assoc. NY State Champions. The Admirals have been a three-time runner up to the state championship title. Additionally, the band was crowned the Musical Arts Conference Class 5 and Grand Champions in both 2003 and 2004. In 2004, the Admiral Marching Band attended the Bands of America Eastern Regional Championships, where they were named a finalist, placed second overall, and won the award for Outstanding Visual Performance in both the preliminary and finals competition. They have been named a BOA Eastern Regional Finalist each time they have attended the event. Finally in 2004, and for the first time in the program’s rich history, the Admiral marching band competed in the Bands of America Grand National Championships, held in Indianapolis, Indiana. At the Grand Nationals, out of 100 bands in competition, the marching band received a Division I rating (the highest rating level), was named as a semi-finalist, and placed among the top 25 bands in the nation. Aside from his duties at Arlington High School, Mr. Guillen is also very active as a freelance arranger, composer and program consultant for many competitive marching bands and drum corps and has been invited to work with numerous high school bands and various musical organizations as a clinician, adjudicator, and guest conductor around the country. His marching band and drum corps arrangements have been a part of many state and regional championship programs. Mr. Guillen was a performing member of the world champion Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps (formerly the Garfield Cadets) as well as the Sunrisers Drum and Bugle Corps. He served as program coordinator, brass arranger caption head for the Sunrisers from 1994 to 1999. Mr. Guillen returned to the Sunrisers in 2007 to help lead the corps to the DCA Class “A” World Championship as its program coordinator and brass arranger/instructor. Mr. Guillen is also an active adjudicator for marching band and drum corps throughout the U.S.A. After serving as a judging DCA from 2001 through 2006 and in 2008, he was appointed the Brass Caption Judging Supervisor for DCA in 2009 and has held that position with DCA since then. Mr. Guillen is also an active freelance adjudicator with MAC, US Bands, ISSMA, and KMEA. He currently resides in the town of LaGrange, NY with his and their four daughters, and feels truly blessed.

          February 11, 2017