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David Santiago Joins Newberry College as Marching Band Director

May 11, 2017

David M. Santiago will join Newberry College as its new marching band director effective June 1, 2017.

Santiago has been contributing to the music education of students in Chapin schools for the past 31 years. He joined Chapin High School in 1986 as Assistant Band Director. During his first year in that position, he founded the Chapin High School Jazz Band, which went on to receive Superior ratings at state, regional and national jazz festivals for the next 26 years. 

When Chapel Middle School opened in 1991, Santiago was appointed Band Director, where he has served for the past 26 years while continuing to assist with all facets of the entire Chapin band program for grades 6 – 12. 

“Mr. Santiago’s years of experience as a band director and music educator will be a tremendous asset to the music program at Newberry College,” said Dr. Chris Sheppard, Chair of Newberry College’s Department of Music. “We look forward to witnessing the transformation that David’s energy and creativity will bring about in our marching band program.” 

Under Santiago’s direction, Chapin Middle School bands have consistently earned Superior ratings at concert festivals and contests throughout the Southeast, as well as 29 consecutive Outstanding Performance Awards given annually by the South Carolina Band Director’s Association. 

Students in the CMS band program routinely earn Superior ratings at the South Carolina Solo and Ensemble Festival every year, and consistently place in the South Carolina All-State Band, Regional and District Honor Bands. 

Santiago was honored in 2013 by the National Band Association with both the Citation of Excellence and the Outstanding Jazz Educator Award. He also received the 2014 South Carolina Bandmaster of the Year Award given by the Phi Beta Mu national band fraternity. Earlier in his teaching career, he was recognized by the American School Band Directors Association in 1997 with the South Carolina Middle School Band Director of the Year Award and was named Chapin Middle School Teacher of the Year for 1993-94. 

In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Santiago frequently serves as a clinician/adjudicator at music festivals and contests and as a guest clinician throughout South Carolina. He also has served for seven years as Director of Winds and Percussion for the Tri-District Arts Consortium. Santiago performs regularly as a professional trumpeter for special services and events throughout South Carolina. 

Santiago is an active member several organizations for musicians and music educators as well as Phi Mu Alpha and Phi Beta Mu National Band Fraternity. He served a three-year term as one of four Middle/Junior High School representatives on the prestigious board of directors for the National Band Directors Association. 

Santiago received his Bachelor of Music Education in 1985 from the University of South Carolina in Columbia. He earned his Master of Music Education in 1986 from the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg. He is currently pursuing post-graduate work to complete 30 graduate hours above his master’s degree. 

“I am excited to be joining forces with the music faculty at Newberry College as we work together to make the Scarlet Spirit Marching Band an amazing experience for the students,” Santiago said. “We hope to add new energy and excitement to our performances at sporting events throughout the year.” 

A native of Columbia, S.C., Santiago graduated from Irmo High School in 1981. He and his wife, Kimberly, live in Chapin, S.C., with their children, Christian, Colin and Nicole.