Conductor for The Band
Bruce Ham grew up in Rossland, BC where he began his musical career at the age of 13 playing the trombone in the school band. It was Bruce’s band director, Rich DiPasquale, who introduced him to the music of the emerging horn bands of the ’70s. He was soon found playing in several groups in the Rossland/Trail area including a 7-member jazz/rock band – JazzMen.
After high school, Bruce moved to the USA to study music at Olympic College in Bremerton, WA. There he had the privilege of studying with Dr. Ralph Mutchler (nationally recognized arranger) and Floyd Standifer (a jazz legend in Seattle). Two years later, Bruce moved to Western Washington University, in Bellingham, WA to study with many great musicians such as Scott Reeves (trombone), Denis Smith (trombone), Bill Cole (trumpet) and Cole Biasini (conductor).
1979 saw Bruce moving back to Canada into his first teaching “gig” at North Island Secondary School in Port McNeil, BC. There he spent 2 years building the band program and then moved to Victoria. Before retiring from Lambrick Park Secondary in 2015, Bruce spent 35 years teaching band in School District 61. Throughout the years, he has been an active musician in Victoria, playing with numerous groups such as Blue Champagne, After Eight, Eclipse, the Greater Victoria Concert Band, the Don Leppard Big Band, Dal Richards Orchestra, the Chris Millington Big Band, the Swiftsure Big Band, the UVic Big Band and Queenie and the Groove Kings. Bruce formed the Island Big Band and has been the Musical Director of the Commodores Big Band as well as Assistant Music Director for the Sidney Concert Band since joining the band in September 2015.