WARREN, NJ - In celebrating the 88th anniversary of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, The Great American Marching Band will once again march into Herald Square on November 27, and five musicians from Watchung Hills will be marching with them.
Students are selected based on their musical ability and past achievements, and Nicholas Briski, Katherine Briski, Anthony Cuonzo, Andrew Morrison, and John Ray were all selected. Melissa Pennett of Watchung,who attends Immaculata, was also selected.
The opportunity is open to students from over 14,000 high schools across the United States. Since 2006 when the band was formed, over 2000 students from across the United States have had the opportunity to perform in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade as part of Macy's Great American Marching Band.
Stepping-off from Central Park, the Band will be cheered by 3 million live spectators, before arriving at Macy's Herald Square for their national performance for more than 50 million TV viewers watching the broadcast live on NBC.
While a group called the Great American Marching Band might be expected to play John Philip Sousa at the parade, the band will shake it up and will be playing Taylor Swift's song "Shake it Off" and Bruno Mars' "Locked Out of Heaven."
The parade starts at 9 a.m. at 77th Street and Central Park West, then cuts over 59th Street to Sixth Avenue and goes down Sixth Avenue to 34th Street, where it makes a right to Seventh Avenue. It ends at the Macy's flagship store on Seventh Avenue and finishes at noon.
The students participate in this prestigious band with over 245 students, representing every state. The musicians, under the direction of Dr. Richard Good and assisted by Barry Houser, will be complemented by approximately 40 flags and dancers.
Good is the Director of Bands at Auburn University in Auburn, AL and Houser is the Assistant Director of Bands and Director of the Marching Illini and Athletic Bands at the University of Illinois. The percussion instructor is Dr. Doug Rosener, who is the Associate Director of Bands at Auburn University.
The students will also have the opportunity to attend a leadership/educational workshop while in NY. The workshop will focus on leadership and encourage students to achieve their maximum potential. In addition to rehearsals, the Macy's band program includes other activities for the students, including a Broadway play and sightseeing trips.
The Band Hall, TN, is supplying the Band's custom uniforms. Sousaphones are supplied by Jupiter Band Instruments. Marching Percussion is supplied by Mapex Drums, a division of Jupiter Instruments and Sabian provides the cymbals.
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