Oaks Christian Orchestra boasts a full complement of strings including violin, viola, cello, and bass. Our ensemble performs regularly throughout the school year, performing works from the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic periods as well as pieces from contemporary genres including rock, jazz, and alternative music. Collaboration is key to our success as a Performing Arts department, and our orchestra works closely together with the choirs, symphonic band, and jazz band to create amazing musical experiences for both students and audiences alike. These partnerships translate into engaging and exciting concerts and events which have become one of the distinctive elements of Oaks Christian School. Chamber Strings, our honors string ensemble, is made up of the top students from the orchestra and they perform at various school functions and community events.
Mary Kay Altizer is currently the Department Chair of the Performing Arts at Oaks Christian School. She conducts the orchestra, heads up the piano department, and has developed and teaches the digital recording and production program, utilizing Pro Tools and Logic Pro X. She is also the writer, arranger, and producer of Oaks Christian’s annual Spring Spectacular. Mary Kay has performed in many musical arenas from symphony pianist to studio work and is a composer and arranger as well. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Piano Performance from the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music, a Professional Certification in Digital Recording and Production from Berklee College of Music, and a Masters of Arts in Educational Technology from Azusa Pacific University. Mary Kay has been teaching at Oaks Christian since 2001, and was a recipient of the Atsinger Award for Teaching Excellence, naming her “Teacher of the Year.”
Middle School Strings
Naomi Mandojana joined the Oaks Christian Performing Arts Department in 2017 as the Director of Middle School Orchestras. A Wisconsin native, Naomi studied violin, viola, flute, and voice during her formative years. She continued to study viola at the Conservatory of Music Lawrence University where she earned a Bachelors of Music in K-12 Instrumental Music Education. Naomi has served in several capacities as an instrumental music educator in both public school and private studio settings around the country. While her experience encompasses teaching band, orchestra, choir and guitar, she is most passionate about string pedagogy and conducting orchestral ensembles. She loves the challenge of engaging students, helping them explore their musical interests and strive for musical excellence.
Naomi moved to the Conejo Valley in 2016 with her husband and two children. When not engaging students in learning music, she enjoys baking a great batch of chocolate chip cookies, recreating outdoors, intentionally listening to music, and spending time with her family.