August 11, 2014 at 6:00 AM
MADISON, NJ - Brian Culligan, a 15-year-old drummer and bassist from Madison, was chosen to represent School of Rock Chatham as a member of the School of Rock AllStars Band, which has just completed a mini-tour of the East Coast in support of Love Hope Strength, an international music-centric cancer charity.
"Brian is one of the hardest working students at School of Rock Chatham," said Art Lima, music director at School of Rock Chatham. "I can always depend on him to be fully prepared with whatever drum part he's assigned, and he definitely deserved to win a spot on this year's All-Star tour."
The AllStars’ tour included performances in Chicago at the House of Blues, the Beat Kitchen, and at the Lollapalooza festival, along with Eminem, the Arctic Monkeys, Lorde and Portugal. Raising awareness for the Love Hope Strength’s efforts to build and support cancer centers around the world, boost awareness of global cancer needs, and expand international bone marrow databases are all part of the tour's mission.
“We have roughly 200 bone marrow drives scheduled this summer and are stretched thin with volunteers and resources,” sais Shannon Foley, executive director of Love Hope Strength. “Teaming up with the School of Rock AllStars gave us the opportunity to be at more concerts and festivals than we ever could attend without them. Amazingly, in the three years that we’ve been working with the AllStars, we’ve found 12 bone marrow matches among School of Rock families and supporters--which could mean the difference between life and death for a patient with blood cancer.”
Culligan auditioned for the AllStars in January and was notified in April that he was selected to be part of the band.
"While the AllStars experience was a challenge, it was also rewarding musically and socially," sais Culligan, a rising sophomore at Madison High School. "It's a culmination of years of hard work, and truly embodies all the great things that School of Rock stands for."
Culligan’s fellow band members, which included 24 School of Rock students from 12 schools in New York, New Jersey, Connecticu, and Massachusetts, assembled on July 27 for rehearsals in Woodland Park and began the five-day tour on July 30.