Mr. Kelby Koch
Kelby Koch is currently in his 8th year as a band director in Dickinson ISD and 6th year at Kranz Junior High School. He is responsible for the Honors Band and assists with all the other performing organizations and beginner classes. Prior to coming to Dickinson, Mr. Koch earned his Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music in trumpet performance. While at Indiana, Mr. Koch studied with Edmund Cord and Anthony Plog. After graduating Mr. Koch studied extensively with Robert Walp of the Houston Symphony. During this time, he also found success teaching private lessons. In Mr. Koch's private lesson studio many students won several solo competitions and performing in groups such as the National Youth Orchestra of America, Honor Orchestra of America, Jazz Band of America, United States Air Force Band, Houston Ballet, and Houston Symphony.
Mr. Koch is the son of Hall of Fame band director Jim Koch, who taught at Brazoswood High School. Kelby credits his parents and especially his father with his and his brother Kelton’s musical success. Kelton is a trombonist in the prestigious Vienna Philharmonic. Without their support and knowledge, he wouldn’t have had the opportunities to study with some of the finest brass teachers, and be in the position he is today.
Mr. Koch plays professionally in the Houston area playing a variety of styles mostly consisting of classical and jazz. He is a member of the Magnolia City Brass Band, Danny Ray Acoustic Production, Royal Dukes Band, Brazosport Jazz Orchestra, and Brazosport Big Band.
Mr. Koch's bands have consistently received UIL Sweepstakes ratings, as well as unanimous first division ratings, Best In Class, and Overall Outstanding Band honors at festivals around the state. Since 2021, the program at Kranz has earned distinction as a National Wind Band Honors Class AA National Winner. Mr. Koch is extremely excited to be apart of the Dickinson Gator Band and continue to build off the traditions of success accomplished.
Mr. Juan Castillo Inocencio
Juan Castillo is currently in his sixth year of teaching at Kranz Jr. High. He is responsible for the Symphonic Band and assists with all other performing ensembles in addition to beginner classes in Dickinson ISD. Mr. Castillo is a graduate of Sam Houston State University where he studied under Patricia Card and was part of the Bearkat Marching Band, where he was a music tech for the 2015-2016 and 2017-2018 seasons, the Wind Ensemble, and the Symphony Orchestra. During that time Mr. Castillo also held leadership positions and was Principal Clarinetist for the Fall of 2016. Prior to teaching at Kranz, Mr. Castillo taught private lessons in Huntsville ISD and Dickinson ISD where he taught all levels of students ranging from 6th-12th grade.
Mr. Castillo still performs as a clarinetist and saxophonist in the Houston area. He performs in community bands, jazz ensembles, and chamber groups.