• Major: Percussion Performance
  • Dream Job: Percussionist for the L.A. Philharmonic
  • Hobbies: Listening to Music, Drumline
  • Binge Watched: Daredevil
  • Favorite Food: Ice Cream

“It’s hard to see growth, when you look at yourself just day to day.”

Kevin Stict, 22, spoke these words after practicing on the xylophone for nearly four hours. After having his senior recital, where he was playing close to an hour of music, solo, he is outside the music department on a Friday afternoon. Stict tunes out the world outside, goes through the notes slowly, then increases the tempo. Even looking at what he is doing today, it is hard to imagine where he had come from.

Upcoming concerts at Cal State Fullerton

“It’s funny,” Kevin recalls, “I was pretty good for my high school. But when I came here [CSUF] I realized how much I didn’t know about music. I didn’t know a lot of composers, I didn’t know a lot of famous pieces, and I wasn’t privately trained.”

“I didn’t have private lessons before I entered,” Kevin said, “which is a little unusual to get into a school of music.”

The school of music recently had a concert for its wind ensemble, and there is a real demand upon those in the arts department for both time and effort. Kevin came to Cal State Fullerton as a physics major, and it took him a while to understand the work ethic needed to be successful as a performer.

Todd Miller, an instructor at CSUF’s school of music, recalls some of his earlier days with Kevin, and some of the struggles they’ve both experienced.

“Well, to be honest, we had a few go-arounds. I didn’t yell at him, but I tried to make very clear to him that, first of all, how far behind he was at the beginning, and second of all, I tried to make clear to him what it would take to get him from point A to whatever point he wanted to end up.”

Todd Miller – Professor of Music at CSUF

“I actually owe all of my credit to Todd Miller.” Stict says of his instructor. “He saw me play and he could tell I was untrained. But he definitely saw that I had a certain musical nuance to me.”

“It is an incredible commitment to be a musician.” Miller states. “Once he really decided that that’s what he was gonna do, from then on it was really easy to teach him because I’d tell him to do something and he’d do it.”

“I really have grown as a musician.” Kevin states. “My ears have developed so much better, I have such a higher standard for my music and my playing, and that’s what I’ve really gotten out of this. I couldn’t ask for anything more than what I’ve received here.” – Donald Edmonds