SPARTA, NJ – Under gray skies, the Sparta High School Marching Band gave a showcase performance for family and friends. The Friday evening performance was the culmination of a week spent together practicing the songs, learning choreography and creating a team.
They had spent Monday and Tuesday at Sparta High School. On Wednesday, Thursday and Friday they stayed at the facilities at Team USA in Port Jervis, N.Y.
“It has been an amazing journey. Their attitudes were awesome. Their work ethic was awesome. It has been a wonderful week,” Band Director Dr. Deborah Gianuzzi said.
The new program is based on the music of Tim Burton, the iconic movie maker, and Danny Elfman. The band performed What’s This, Ice Dance, Oogie Boogie, Peewee’s Big Adventure and Beetlejuice. Burton is known for films such as Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare before Christmas, Beetlejuice and Sweeney Todd to name a few.
The band was led by three drum majors Madeline Abatemarco, Katie Scaglione and Kristen Petrucci. They seamlessly passed the metaphorical baton, scaling the scaffold platform without missing a beat. The other section captains are:
- Brass – Julian Buttitta, Rohan Drummond and Brittany Rivera,
- Color Guard - Megan Coyle and Brendan Strowe,
- Woodwinds – Kira Manniello, Nicole Sileo and Matt Rotondi,
- Percussion - Madison Colaco and Eric Philippou and
- Quartermaster – Stephen Andrewlavage
As they were entering the building to enjoy cake and comradery, band parent Nancy Rotondi said, “I give them a lot of credit for the way that they pull together, putting aside any differences. They unify on the field. I’m very proud of them. It is a great organization for students to join.” Her son Matthew has been a part of the marching Spartans for four years. “It has been a great experience.”
There are several people involved in creating the program for the students and assisting in the rehearsals. Scott Tomlin is the assistant band director and drill designer. The color guard instructor is Lori Tomlin, with assistant Christina Lami. Percussion Instructors are Phil Gallo and Kirby Marino.
Sparta High School's first varsity football game is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 13 at Cassels Field beginning at 2:30 p.m.