RANDOLPH, NJ- Randolph High School junior Michael DeMelfi will spend his Thanksgiving playing the sousaphone in Macy’s Great American Marching Band at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Michael sent an audition tape and was selected to perform with some of the top high school musicians in the country. “I am excited to represent Randolph,” he said. “I feel like this is an opportunity to share my musical skills off to everyone who goes to the parade and watches the parade on television and shows what it takes to be a good musician.”
Playing with other talented musicians “will absolutely make me a better musician,” he said. “I feel like this is an opportunity to step up my musical career.”
Michael said he will also need “to make a bigger sound” because he will be playing with a bigger group.
Michael has never actually been to the parade before. He will go to New York City beginning November 19 for a week of practice and fun with the 183 other musicians all of Thanksgiving week to practice and prepare for the parade. Besides lots of practice, the band members will go to a Broadway play, visit the 9/11 Museum and enjoy dinner at different restaurants.
This is the second exciting performance for Michael in New York City this year. He also played on the Saturday Today Show with other Randolph Marching Band members for a special Homecoming segment.
The 183 band members will wear special red and white uniforms with the colors of Macy’s and play in the parade in front of Macy’s at Herald Square, he said. His family will come in to the city to watch the parade and then they will all go out to dinner for Thanksgiving, he said.
Michael loves music. He began playing the baritone in the fourth grade, then switching to the tuba in the eighth grade. “I felt like the tuba fit me better,” he said.
He plays in the high school marching band, wind ensemble and jazz ensemble. He also played with the North Jersey Area Band for freshman and sophomore year. He plans to pursue a career in music or music education.
RHS Band Director Dawn Russo said she is very excited for Michael. “I think this is awesome-the more playing experience he gets, the better and the more he will bring his experience back to our school,” she said.
“Congratulations to Michael on his selection as a member of the Macy’s Great American Marching Band! “ said Frank Perrone, Randolph’s Supervisor of Visual and Performing Arts. “We are proud that he will be able to represent Randolph during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.”