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C. Foster Payne

Foster has been a musician all his life, starting with singing folk songs with his mother on the back porch, starting a tradition wherein the neighborhood kids all came over to sing along every weekend. Foster plays the Trumpet and French Horn, and although he enjoys playing them he found himself at an early age fascinated with music composition, specifically music written for the cinema. Starting in high school Foster would buy the CDs and piano books of composers such at John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith, and James Horner and spend hours transcribing what he heard on the CDs, doing his best to recreate the scores from the movies. After serving 12 years in the US Air Force, Foster attended the University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music for music composition and even conducted multiple ensembles while there. Since then Foster founded and became the associate conductor of the High Plains Music Ensemble in Strasburg, CO and has also become an award-winning composer, his works being performed in over a dozen states. It was through his composition of and the Mile-High Community Band’s performance of his “High Plains Suite” that Foster formed an association with the MHCB and Mike Lucas. Since then Foster has become the assistant conductor of the MHCB as well as the Worship Pastor at Arapahoe Road Baptist Church, leading weekly a praise band and a choir of 30+ members.

Mike Lucas

Mike has been a professional musician for over 35 years. mikeHe has a Bachelor of Music Education from Colorado State University and a Master’s degree in conducting from the University of Denver. He is a 35 year member of the Denver Municipal Band, the oldest professional band in the nation, and performs as assistant conductor on occasion.

Playing all saxophones, clarinet and flute, Mike has performed with such renowned musicians as: Ella Fitzgerald, Robert Goulet, Nelson Riddle, Mel Torme, Johnny Mathis, Manhattan Transfer, Steve Lawrence and Edie Gormet, Clark Terry, Bobby Shew, Vikki Carr, and many others. He continues to play with the Dean Bushnell Orchestra and Prestige Music here in Denver.

He currently teaches at Red Rocks Community College, and has also been an adjunct professor at Arapahoe Community College and Metropolitan State College.

Mike’s hobbies include gourmet cooking and playing with his 3 beautiful grandchildren!

Rick Mongrain

Rick MongrainOur Beginning/Intermediate Band & Jazz Combo Conductor is Rick Mongrain.

Rick graduated from Colorado State University with a degree in Music Education and completed a Masters degree in Arts Education from Leslie College in Cambridge, Mass.

He taught in the Denver Public Schools for 30 years: 8 years at Morey Junior High/Middle School and 22 years at John F. Kennedy High School - teaching Beginning, Intermediate and Concert Bands, Orchestra, Jazz Band and AP Music Theory.

Rick has been teaching private music lessons for 15 years, specializing in the woodwind family, i.e. flute, clarinet, and saxophone.

He has been a member of the Denver Musicians Association for 37 years, and has played professionally for all that time. A member of The Denver Municipal Band for 36 years, he has played at many dances and shows in the Denver area. Some examples are the Ice Capades, Ringling Brothers Circus, The Platters, The Coasters, and Leslie Gore among others.

He enjoys fly-fishing, being in the mountains, and seeing his 6 grandchildren who all live in the Denver area.

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About The Band

The Denver Junior Police Band (dba Mile High Community Band) is an affirmative action/equal opportunity organization and does not discriminate against any person or organization based on age, race, sex, color, creed, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, transgender status, gender identity, gender expression, ancestry, marital status, gender, veteran status, military status, political service, affiliation, or disability.

MHCB, photo by Tera Seville