Sunday, December 6, 2009

My Freshman Year in the THS Band - 1st Concert!

Our last football game to perform at for this year was a couple of weeks ago and it was also Senior Night. It was cold, exciting, and a tad bit saddening seeing as it was the seniors last night performing for the THS marching band at our football games. I wish them good luck in the future and I hope they never forget all of us. As well, I will never forget any of them since they helped me feel more welcomed being in the THS band. But anyways, now snow is falling on the ground! And to me, that is welcoming December. Also our first concert of the year is coming up, our Winter Concert, this upcoming Wednesday and I am super excited to be performing. I already received my concert dress and have already tried it on and it looks very nice. I can't wait to see how everyone looks this Wednesday because I imagine everyone looking elegant and proper. I like the songs we're playing, and I think "The Blue and The Grey" would have to be my favorite song out of all to be performing for this concert. Everything sounds so nice, and I hope we're able to make those improvements in the song "Undertow" before the concert. I have faith in the band! And we're capable of doing an amazing job. Everything is going by so quickly. Before I know it, here comes the DC trip in July 2010. Gah! Yesterday was also Hug A Band Kid Day, and I never knew something like that existed.

Monday, October 19, 2009

My Freshman Year in the THS Band - Parades!

First thing to write about, the football games, half time show, and Tuesday Night Rehearsals. The football games are just so fun. We're pretty much louder than the cheerleaders when it comes to chanting and cheering in the stands and we all have a good time. It's pretty much one of the most fun things I do. You can dance to the music and get really pumped. It's such a thrill, I wish there were more football games or some other sports game we can play at because we just love being supportive and showing off our PRIDE, RESPECT, & TRADITION for our school. I really don't care if my friends or someone else makes fun of our uniform and our top hats and plumes. When I'm in uniform, I'm just the happiest girl. I'm proud to show that I represent and play in the Torrington High School Marching Band. Also, you stand out in crowds of people when you're in uniform at games and I love when people like my friends say that we did a great job and actually took the time to watch the half time show. The half time show gets me pumped too because all eyes are on the band when we get announced and start playing. The announcer says something like please welcome the Torrington High School Marching Band, what parades or events we're doing and that we're representing Connecticut in the July 4th 2010 parade in Washington D.C. in the summer. Drill isn't too bad. Rehearsals are fun and you can do so much in just an hour or so. For the first football game, we couldn't do the whole half time show because we weren't ready. If we could all cooperate a little better, we would look so good. I'm not saying we look and sound bad. We're good enough to perform in front of a crowd and for them to think we're doing well and we have mistakes here and there, but no one's perfect. Also, we only rehearse every Tuesday and I wish we had rehearsals Tuesday and Thursday or even everyday if that could happen. But now, we have the whole show down and we look pretty good. Just again, we have some work to do and it's sad how rehearsal is only a little over an hour now.
Second thing, parades. Sadly, we didn't march in the Bristol Mums Parade because the weather was just horrible and it was wet and raining outside, so there was no way we were going to march in that weather and risk getting sick and ruining our instruments and uniforms. But if we did march that parade, I know we would've done a great job. And for the Big E. Oh boy, was that a fun day. A lot of great times. Marching for the Big E is not bad at all. The route is easy and there's always people watching you with their cameras or are cheering for you. The bands there are really nice and they support us too. There was also an officer there who had done band and etc. and he was marching with us and Mr. S told us that he said that we were the best band he's seen. That's just great to hear, I love when we get compliments for what we're doing. It was a tad hot and everyone was all sweaty, but thank God we had time to go eat and go hang around after we marched. That was a really great day. The North Adams Parade is probably the most tiring parade, honestly. But you can deal with it, just push yourself a little and that's all. Nobody has ever drowned from their sweat. It's competition and that's understandable for it to be tiring. We played 4 times passed the judges without doing band horns down, but we still sounded good. We marched 2 miles playing and marching, and wow drumline must have been really tired. Most important things to focus on while we're marching: feet, posture, horn angles. Marching is honestly not hard, at all. As long as we tried our hardest, no one's going to be happier than Mr. S.
And last, but not least. Concert band. I do like the music. We still have a lot to work on and then our first concert is in December, but we still have a lot of time to practice and go over things. The music is definitely harder, but hey, that's high school for you. Practice makes perfect.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

My Freshman Year in the THS Band! - 1st Football Game

Okay, so I haven't been writing blogs lately but band honestly always makes my day better and it's the best part of the day. We have a football game to perform at this Friday and I'm insanely excited and kind of nervous. I'm not totally nervous because I think I know what I'm suppose to be doing, so there won't be much problems. What I'm bummed about is that we don't have the drill down for the songs Midnight Special and Hey Pachuco for the half time show at the football game, so we're just going to stand and then scatter and then get into some form of an arch. We kind of did crappy today. I don't know how people feel about this Friday, I know with all the excitement or being nervous and etc. and then letting that energy out during our time, we can pull it off. I just know we will do good even though we don't have everything down. I've noticed that whenever we're marching or just playing I don't think about anything but marching. I tested myself tonight, and I just blocked everything out of my head and focused on what I was doing at the present time. Marching is like a stress reliever and worry blocker to me, and I'm so glad to be in the Torrington High School Marching Band. I know I've said that like a million times before, but it's the truth. I'm stoked for Friday, what else could I possibly say? OH, and we have a few parades coming up! I'm really nervous for those. I'm worried if I'm not in step or my flute angle is horrible or I'm not align with everyone. Pressure is put on you because you know there's going to be a lot of people watching you and everywhere we go, somebody has seen us for the first time. First impressions are deadly and everyone will be watching what we do. It's nerve wrecking. And I'm actually more nervous than excited for marching. Especially how I'm up front and towards the center of the front line and our shiny flutes will draw attention. I don't think we'll do horrible at all, I think we'll do great in my opinion. And like Mr. S said, if we don't win anything then that's our fault because we were too busy talking or not paying attention and we deserve it. Mr. S actually gives the best pep talks ever, in my opinion. Every time he talks, I just have to improve on what I'm doing and so does everyone else. I don't get how you cannot be proud of being a part of this band. If I could be in this band, the Torrington High School Marching Band, for the rest of my life and with the people in it now. I'd definitely do it.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Freshman Year in Band - Band Camp August 21, 2009

Sigh, today was the ending of what I've been looking forward to all summer, Band Camp. Four straight days of seeing great, loving people and a wonderful band teacher. We did the usual today. Practice drill, music, and marching. But we did have a little party and a bunch of people brought good food and everyone just hung out and relaxed. And we finally know what song we're playing when we're marching which is "Stiletto" and it's such an awesome song. It brings lots of energy and it's positive song. But we have a lot of work to do on it, but that's okay because it's only the fourth day that most people got the music and I know we'll sound great. The drill for the half time show is memorized, all we need is a few tweaks and adjustments and that's what Tuesday Night Rehearsals is for! To practice drill, music, and marching some more. We watched some videos of other bands doing drill and marching, and we had our opinions. Since they were either good or bad, we want people to see us and we want them to give us a good impression of, "Wow, the Torrington High School Marching Band is really awesome!" So, we have a lot work to work on still. We still need to march in step and have good horn angles or else it just looks sloppy to people who watch us. Overall, I personally think marching is so fun. That's pretty much what I look forward to most of the time when I'm doing marching band. I noticed every blog entry I have written about band camp at least has something about being tired, which I am right now. And again, it's all worth it. Thank you everyone for good times at band camp. Here's to the future of the Torrington High School Marching Band 2009-2010. Let's go, band!

Friday, August 21, 2009

My Freshman Year in Band - Band Camp August 20, 2009

Today was such an exciting day at Band Camp. I started something new as Mr. S said! Haha, I got really pumped to just be in band, and the drill before the song "Midnight Special" I ran down the line to give people high fives. It just gives me a lot of energy and to see everyone being happy to be in band. I'm so proud to be joining the band this year. There is really awesome people and they're so nice and about everyone is committed. The flute section for this year are just the best people to be playing the same instrument with, we came up with this plan and it didn't really work out that well, but we showed the band that flutes aren't weak. I never knew marching had to be so exact. You have to stay align with everyone, have a good posture, make sure your instruments are in the right positions, and you really have to make sure you're marching right. You have to roll your feet and make sure you're stepping the same as everyone else. The way you march and horn positions are very noticeable to judges and band directors and if everything is out of place, it's shown as sloppy. Also, today while we were doing parade lapses we had to repeat At the Ready, Detail, and Attention about 3 times because we aren't suppose to move when we're at attention. Mr. S and probably the students want the people who are watching us to be like, "Man, the Torrington High School Marching Band is good!" As Mr. S says, everywhere we go at least one person has seen us for the first time and first impressions are deadly. Since that saying ever went in my head, I just have to make sure everything is turning out good and everyone is doing their job correctly. We represent the Torrington High School wherever we go, and that's a big job. Everyone keeps getting better and better everyday and I am so proud to be part of this band. I can't believe band camp is almost over, it's so much fun. But thank God that band is a class and there's also Tuesday Night Rehearsals. The Band Camp party is tomorrow and students are bringing things, so I'm making sweet cupcakes! I hope rain doesn't ruin the last day of Band Camp.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

My Freshman Year in Band - Band Camp August 19,2009

My third blog entry:

A long day, but we did a lot in 8 hours! We learned half of the drill that we're going to be doing for the half time show during football season and we went over half time music and played it, and we also marched together and the drumline played the new, amazing cadence. It was very hot today when we were learning the drill, but everyone made it, and then it started getting cooler, so everything was fine. Good thing everyone memorizes what to do, we didn't have any trouble really with anything except for the half time music. But that's understandable because people haven't really touched their instruments all summer and we forget things. But that's alright. I'm pretty exhausted from today, but more practicing and learning tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

My Freshman Year in Band - Band Camp August 18, 2009

My second blog!

I'm so exhausted, but it's a good exhausted. And I'm exhausted from Band Camp! We learned how to march today and start building strong calf muscles. We went over Detail, Attention, Horns Up/Down, Marking Time, Forward Marching, Backwards Marching, Slides, and Box Drill. That's a lot to learn in one day, but thank God that the seniors were there to help us and make sure we're doing things right since they know what they're doing. They made it so much easier to get through the hot day, and they were super nice and they didn't give us trouble at all, well at least in my opinion. Since Mr. S is very picky and wants to make sure that everything is close to perfect, we had to repeat things over and over, but it's all worth it at the end. Like when we went over forward marching, backward marching, slides, and the box drill I had about 6 left feet and it took me about 3 tries to get everything down and right. When people see us marching, we don't want to just walk with sloppy posture and just overall not looking good. They want to see us with good posture, everything exact, and that horns are held accordingly to what's told. For example, since I'm a flute player, I have to play with my flute straight and parallel to the ground and it's not just me, it's every other flute player too. We had to keep our chins up since our feet weren't going anywhere from marching. And marching isn't just walking down a street and playing your instrument, you have to know commands and etc. and a good band teacher tops it off. Well, there was a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. And everything was great, I love band camp and I'm stoked for the rest of the years of band in THS. We're going over drills and I think more marching for the rest. Today was a good day! By the way, I was kidding about the blood and tears.

This is Razina Rintharamy (Flute Class of 2013) and she will be blogging throughout the 2009-2010 School Year about "My Freshman Year in the THS Band".

Sunday, August 9, 2009

My Freshman Year in the THS Band

This is Razina Rintharamy (Flute Class of 2013) and she will be blogging throughout the 2009-2010 School Year about "My Freshman Year in the THS Band".

August 9, 2009

"I am really excited and nervous for band. I'm very excited for Band Camp since I'm told by many that it's fun and even though I've been looking forward to Band Camp all summer, I am nervous about marching and how to do it correctly and if I mess up, would it be noticeable? Also since I'm a flute player, I have to play with my flute straight since I'm told it makes you look better, so that's going to be a little struggle for me. And if I'm feeling like I'm out of place, what should I do? Because one person can make a huge effect on a big group of people. I'm expecting numerous times around the track to practice for marching and numerous times of playing songs, so it sounds so close to perfect. I'm also expecting a lot of sweating while actually marching in a parade and getting tired easily. I'm excited for seeing friends I haven't seen and haven't played with in a year or so and I'm glad they're there, so if I'm having trouble with something, they can help me and make sure I'm doing it right. I am also nervous about marching in Washington D.C. next summer. It's unbelievable that the THS Band has been chosen for the bands in Connecticut to march in the parade. It kind of puts pressure on the new freshmen, which includes me, because we have to learn how to march properly, learn the music and actually memorize it instead of faking it. When you think about it, it's like "Whoa, how can I explain this?" Because I can't really describe about how I feel about just being a incoming freshmen and already getting ready to march in a parade viewed by more than 100,000 people. Well, Band Camp, Band throughout the school year, and just overall practice should lead me through my journey for THS Band. I am proud to become a band member and I'm looking forward to great memories that will last".

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Band Camp - August 17-21, 2009

Band Camp will be held at THS the week of August 17-21, 2009.

Monday Aug 17 - 9:00am-3:00pm
Drumline Only

Tuesday Aug 18 - 9:00am-3:00pm
Freshman/New Students/Seniors/Drumline

Wed Aug 19 - 12:00pm-8:00pm

Thursday Aug 20 - 12:00pm-8:00pm

Friday Aug 21 - 12:00pm-8:00pm

What to Bring
1. Instrument
2. Music
3. Sun block and hat
4. Water bottle - labeled with your name
5. Drill in a 3-ring binder labeled with your name
6. Food for Lunch or dinner breaks.

*Please wear comfortable clothing. *Sneakers w/socks only * - Proper marching technique cannot be achieved with sandals.

The goal by the end of band camp is to have all the drill on the field and by friday night - playing stiletto outside in parade block.

If you have any questions let me know

Preparation is the Key to Success!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

THS Band Car Wash Fundraiser

Torrington High School Band Car Wash Fundraiser.
Saturday June 27, 2009
McDonalds - on Main Street next to K-Mart
FREE CAR WASH - Donations Accepted.

Please Support The Pride of Torrington.

Torrington High School Band
2010 National Independence Day Parade
Connecticut Representative
Washington, D.C.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Torrington schools named among best places to learn music

Published Regsiter Citizen Friday May 15, 2009

TORRINGTON — For the past 10 years the International Music Products Association has honored schools across the nation with the “Best 100” Community for Music Education award.

For the ninth time out of those 10 years, the Torrington Public School District has, yet again, been selected to receive that “Best 100” award. The district is the only one in Connecticut, and one of only two in the entire country, to achieve that distinction.

Between all seven public schools, there are approximately 800 students participating in music performance groups, including band, chorus and orchestra, said Wayne Splettstoeszer, music director for Torrington High School.

NAMM — a former acronym used for the International Music Products Association — selects the “Best 100” recipients based on an in-depth national survey conducted by a partnership of music and educational organizations. The survey includes detailed questions about funding, enrollment, student-teacher rations, music class participation and instruction time among others.

NAMM cited a long list of achievements in the district, some of which included Splettstoeszer’s recognition as National Teacher of the Year, the THS Chamber Choir singing at Carnegie Hall and the TMS Marching Band participating in the 2010 National Independence Day Parade in Washington D.C.

Achieving the victory, for a ninth time, is very exciting and is an example of teamwork within the district, said Joe Campolieta, elementary instrumental music teacher at Forbes and East School.

“I believe it is because this music department works well together and we support each other,” Campolieta said. “In addition, we are very fortunate to have support from our school and central administrators.”

He highlighted also a sense of pride for the district in receiving this award, which not only reflects the schools but also the community at large.

“It gives me a sense of pride to be part of a community — and this is a community award — that supports music education the way Torrington does,” Campolieta said. “It is a pleasure to work in a district that appreciates the value that music education brings to our students helping them to become better students and better citizens.”

Acting Superintendent Barbara Campbell has consistently voiced support for arts and music. The recognition is always delightful and it shows the efforts of the musicians and music teachers alike in the schools, she said.

Echoing comments from Campolieta, Campbell also noted the community aspect to the award.

“I just think it’s a wonderful tribute to a community that is recognized as an arts leader, not only with the schools but with the Warner and the Nutmeg Ballet,” she said. “We really are an arts center in the northwest corner.”

Campbell also praised Splettstoeszer and Campolieta for being leaders in the field. The district is “blessed” to have them on the staff, she said.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

District Band Concert Tuesday May 19

On Tuesday May 19, 2009 7:00pm Torrington High School GYM - Torrington Public Schools will be presenting its annual District Band Concert. The concert will feature over 400 band students from all seven TPS schools.

Concert is free and open to the public.
Come out and support music education in Torrington!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Torrington Musicians Climb a Mountain--Toward Dreams

FALLS VILLAGE-On one of the first full blown days of spring, the halls and houses of Music Mountain reverberated with the sounds of violins, violas, cellos and basses. As the venue's season has not yet begun, the symphony of scales and bits of concertos that drifted onto the central lawn Monday came from 30 of Torrington High School's aspiring musicians, who had trekked up to the music haven for a day of master classes.

"It's gives them an opportunity to learn what we could never give them in Torrington," said Wayne Splettstoeszer, the conductor of the high school's orchestra. "There are not a lot of options for string students."
Thanks to a grant provided by the Community Foundation of Northwest Connecticut, Music Mountain hired six students from the Hartt School to teach two 90-minute classes. Because many of the students do not have private instruction, the master classes were divided up by instrument to create the most individualized situations.

The purposefully low student-to-teacher ratios allowed certain tricks of the trade to emerge, such as how playing a cello's C string in a certain way mimics the theme from the "Jaws" movies, or how a mute can be helpful when practicing in hotel rooms. The Hartt School students had the added advantage of being closer in age to the Torrington students, which fostered an immediate ability for each group to relate to the other, as well as giving the younger musicians an example of what their next step could be in pursuing a musical career."We re-thought the idea of master classes," said Carol Ascher, vice president of Music Mountain, referring to the traditional model of older professionals leading other highly- skilled professionals. "My idea since I've been on the board is that we needed to connect more with underserved kids."

The students and teachers will complete journals, detailing their experience throughout the day and containing their critiques. Ms. Ascher plans to use the feedback as part of her report to the Community Foundation, as well as material for future versions of the partnership with the Torrington school district.
The NAMM Foundation recently awarded the city its ninth ranking in the annual Best 100 for Music Education, and Mr. Splettstoeszer hopes to expand the master class program to the elementary schools, where there is a significant number of string players.
Nicholas Gordon, president of Music Mountain, which his father founded in 1929, explained the benefit to the facilities' guests: "If you take a kid who plays in a high school orchestra and doesn't know what his instrument sounds like and you put him on this stage, suddenly he realizes, 'Gosh, what a wonderful thing it is to play the fiddle.'"
For more information on Music Mountain and its upcoming season, see the Web site

Friday, April 24, 2009

THS Band 2010 4th of July Parade State Representative!

The Torrington High School Marching Band will be representing the State
Connecticut in the 2010 National Independence Day Parade in Washington,
July 3, 2010 - July 5, 2010. Torrington High School was nominated by
Joseph Lieberman to represent Connecticut.

The National Independence Day Parade in Washington, D.C. is the largest
4th of
July Celebration in the United States. An average of over 100,000
people watch
the parade down Constitution Avenue.

This will be the second time that Torrington High School Marching Band
will be
representing the State of Connecticut in a National Parade - Washington,

2006 National Cherry Blossom Parade Connecticut Representative
2010 National Independence Day Parade Connecticut Representative

Please join me in congratulating the band this tremendous honor!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

High school students to ascend Music Mountain

By Henry Moore - Register Citizen

Click to enlarge

Torrington High School is sending a group of string musicians to Music Mountain in Falls Village on Monday to participate in a program of performance and instruction.

Torrington High School is sending a group of string musicians to Music Mountain on Monday to participate in a unique program of performance and instruction. Thirty-one students will be split into groups of five or six to receive advanced instruction from students of the Hartt Conservatory, as part of an expanded offering by the Falls Village venue.

“During the session, each teacher will focus on simple, but critical techniques for a particular instrument,” Carol Ascher, Music Mountain vice president, explained. “The April 27 class is for Torrington High students only, though we hope to expand the program in the future.”

Students that perform in the school musical program do receive training and are required to practice often, and many take private lessons to develop additional skills. Wayne Splettstoeszer, musical director at THS, plans to send a diverse sampling of his program to work with the Hartt students, with 15 violins, three violas, five cellos, and six bases planned for the seminar.

“In the past, Music Mountain has offered these master classes to students with serious backgrounds in their instruments,” Ascher said. “This is our first partnership with THS, and our first attempt to offer master classes to a group of students that will include a number who have never had a private lesson.”

Though many of the students have performed in a theater environment, Music Mountain will afford them the opportunity to experience the rich acoustics of the renowned hall. While no formal performance is planned for this first venture, future classes may conclude with a joint performance by the students and the instructors. The program was initiated by Music Mountain, and funded by the Community Foundation of Northwest Connecticut.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Torrington - Best 100 for Music Education in America! 2009

Torrington Public Schools has been listed as one of the Best 100 for Music Education in America for 2009! Torrington Public Schools has been listed in the Best 100 in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009 making Torrington the most awarded community in Connecticut!

CARLSBAD, Calif., April 16, 2009—The NAMM Foundation today announced the results of its tenth annual “Best Communities for Music Education” survey, which acknowledges schools and districts across the U.S. for their commitment and support of music education in schools. As the economy challenges state and local school budgets to adequately support education, the 124 school districts named by the NAMM Foundation demonstrate the unwavering commitment to provide music education for their students. The NAMM Foundation’s mission is to ensure that all children have access to quality music education programs that encourage lifelong participation in music making.

This year’s roster of musical schools represents 21 states with a record amount of communities from New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Texas. A total of 29 communities are new to the roster. The complete list of “Best Communities” is appended below.

“The potential of music to help children reach their full development is understood by the school districts represented in this year’s survey results,” said Mary Luehrsen, executive director, NAMM Foundation. “We celebrate these communities that are committed to providing access to music education programs and bettering the lives of their students.”

The 2009 survey, which opened on Thursday January 15, and ended Friday, March 13, was available to all districts nationwide. This year, teachers and school district administrators, representing communities across the country, participated in the Web-based survey. The districts were measured across curricular and programmatic criteria as well as public support of their music programs. The survey was developed and administered by The Institute for Educational Research and Public Service, an affiliate of the University of Kansas.

Participants in the survey answered detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program, and other relevant factors in their communities’ music education programs. The responses were verified with district officials, and advisory organizations reviewed the data.

Throughout the survey’s ten years, many districts have reported that making the “Best Communities” list has had a positive effect on their ability to preserve music for their students amid budget cuts in arts programs.

In conducting the annual survey, the NAMM Foundation is joined by advisory organizations in the fields of music and education including, Americans for the Arts (, League of American Orchestras (, The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation (, The Metropolitan Opera Guild (, Music for All (, Music Teachers National Association (, National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts (, National PTA (, Yamaha Corporation of America ( and VH1 Save The Music Foundation ( The survey was conducted by The Institute for Educational Research and Public Service of Lawrence, KS, an affiliate of the University of Kansas.

The complete “Best Communities for Music Education” roster is listed alphabetically below:

School District City State
Abington School District Abington PA
Albion Central School District Albion NY
Ann Arbor Public Schools Ann Arbor MI
Arlington Independent School District Arlington TX
Avon Lake City School District Avon Lake OH
Baltimore County Public Schools Towson MD
Bay Shore Union Free School District Bay Shore NY
Bay Village City School District Bay Village OH
Beachwood City Schools Beachwood OH
Bedford Central School District Mount Kisco NY
Belmont Public Schools Belmont MA
Berea City School District Berea OH
Bethel Public Schools Bethel CT
Boardman Local Schools Boardman OH
Bolivar R-1 School District Bolivar MO
Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD Carrollton TX
Cedar Grove-Belgium School District Cedar Grove WI
Central Cambria School District Ebensburg PA
Central York School District York PA
Chesapeake Public Schools Chesapeake VA
Cheshire Public Schools Cheshire CT
Clarence Central School Clarence NY
Clark County School District Las Vegas NV
Clarkstown Central School District New City NY
Cobb County School District Marietta GA
Conestoga Valley School District Lancaster PA
Cuyahoga Heights Schools Cleveland OH
Dearborn Public Schools Dearborn MI
Denton Independent School District Denton TX
District 279 - Osseo Area Schools Maple Grove MN
Dover Area School District Dover PA
East Meadow Union Free School District Westbury NY
Edmonds School District Edmonds WA
Fairfax County Public Schools Falls Church VA
Fayetteville-Manlius Schools Manlius NY
Franklin Township Public Schools Somerset NJ
Fulton County Schools Atlanta GA
Great Neck Union Free School District Great Neck NY
Greenwich Public Schools Greenwich CT
Guilderland Central School District Guilderland NY
Harborfields Central School District Greenlawn NY
Harford County Public Schools Bel Air MD
Henrico County Public Schools Richmond VA
Herricks Union Free School District No. 9 New Hyde Park NY
Hewlett Woodmere Public Schools Woodmere NY
Hilliard City School District Hilliard OH
Homewood City Schools Homewood AL
Hopewell Valley Regional School District Pennington NJ
Hortonville Area School District Hortonville WI
Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District Bedford TX
Jenison Public Schools Jenison MI
Jericho Union Free School District Jericho NY
Johnson City Central School District Johnson City NY
Katy Independent School District Katy TX
Klein Independent School District Klein TX
Laramie County School District #1 Cheyenne WY
Lawrence Township Public Schools Lawrenceville NJ
Lebanon City Schools Lebanon OH
Le Roy Central Schools Le Roy NY
Liverpool Central School District Liverpool NY
Longwood Central School District Yaphank NY
Loudoun County Public Schools Ashburn VA
Lower Merion School District Ardmore PA
Manhasset Public Schools Manhasset NY
Metuchen Public Schools Metuchen NJ
Midway Independent School District Waco TX
Milaca School District #912 Milaca MN
Mineola Union Free School District Garden City Park NY
Montgomery County Public Schools Christiansburg VA
Monticello Central School District Monticello NY
Mount Lebanon School District Pittsburgh PA
Nanuet Union Free School District Nanuet NY
New Hartford Central School District New Hartford NY
Newfield Central School District Newfield NY
North Allegheny School District Pittsburgh PA
North Babylon Union Free School District North Babylon NY
North Penn School District Lansdale PA
Northmont High School-Northmont City Schools Clayton OH
Northwest Independent School District Justin TX
Northwestern Lehigh Elementary School-Northwestern Lehigh School District New Tripoli PA
Nutley School District Nutley NJ
Oceanside School District Oceanside NY
Olmsted Falls City School District Olmsted Falls OH
Oppenheim-Ephratah Central School District St. Johnsville NY
Osage County R-II Linn MO
Paramus Public Schools Paramus NJ
Pasadena Independent School District Pasadena TX
Pasco School District Number 1 Pasco WA
Pennsbury School District Fairless Hills PA
Perrysburg Exempted Village Schools Perrysburg OH
Phillips-Edison Partnership School Napa CA
Piscataway Public Schools Piscataway NJ
Plano Independent School District Plano TX
Port Jefferson School District Port Jefferson NY
Potsdam Central Schools Potsdam NY
Putnam Valley Central School District Putnam Valley NY
Quaker Valley School District Sewickley PA
Richland County School District One Columbia SC
Roanoke County Schools Roanoke VA
Rosemount High School-Rosemount-Apple Valley School District Rosemount MN
Salem-Keizer School District 24-J Salem OR
Santa Monica-Malibu USD Santa Monica CA
Sayville Public Schools Sayville NY
Scarsdale UFSD Scarsdale NY
Shaker Heights City School District Shaker Heights OH
Simsbury Public Schools Simsbury CT
South Orange Maplewood School District Maplewood NJ
St. John-Endicott Cooperative Schools St. John WA
Stow-Munroe Falls City School District Stow OH
Syosset Central School District Syosset NY
Torrington Public Schools Torrington CT
Troy School District Troy MI
Virginia Beach City Public Schools Virginia Beach VA
Wappingers Central School District Wappingers Falls NY
Washoe County School District Reno NV
Webster Central School District Webster NY
West Genesee Central School District Camillus NY
West Hartford Public Schools West Hartford CT
West Irondequoit Central School District Rochester NY
West Milford Township Public Schools West Milford NJ
West Orange Public Schools West Orange NJ
Willard R-II Schools Willard MO
Williamsport Area School District Williamsport PA
Williamsville Central School District East Amherst NY

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Area school bands perform at Warner

TORRINGTON — Musicians from Region 7, Torrington and Litchfield schools brought their instruments and talent to the Litchfield County Band Festival at the Warner Theatre Tuesday. Students performed on stage before hundreds of friends, patrons and family members.

“This is a really good chance for my kids to hear the other bands play.” said Geoffrey Brookes, director of the Litchfield High Schools Symphonic Band. “It’s a great opportunity for us to display their talents.”

Northwestern Regional High School’s Concert Band, comprised of freshmen, sophomores and juniors, was on stage first, with several challenging works. The group, which generally performs in the band room at the school, appeared relaxed and professional throughout the performance.

Sydney Case, a Northwestern freshman who has been playing the flute since third grade, found the Warner more suited to the full bodied sound of the selections played.

“It’s fun here, less cramped and open,” Case said. “You need to project the sound more, but the acoustics are terrific.”

Litchfield High’s Rachel Clarkin-Berslin has been here before. As a senior, this was her fourth performance at the Warner.

“We all enjoy hearing the music and style of the other bands.” Clarkin-Berslin said. “This performance, in this setting, prepares us for our spring concert at the school.”

Wayne Splettstoeszer, director of the Torrington Symphonic Band, showcased the talents that earned his students recognition at a performance at the Central Connecticut State University recently. Their performance of “Variations on a Korean Folk Song,” featured solo’s from each section.

Many of the students that participated in the activities plan to pursue a degree in music or music education. Litchfield’s Clarkin-Berslin is comparing music programs at Brown University and Vassar College. John DelVento, a senior at Torrington High School, has been accepted at the Hartt School, where he intends to pursue a double music major.

The evening concluded with performances by the Northwestern Wind Symphony, comprised of experienced seniors and dedicated underclassmen.

“There is a social order of progression into the Wind Symphony,” said Stephen Zimmerman, musical director for Northwestern. “The kids know when they are ready to go to the next level, and this group requires a very high commitment.”

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Litchfield County Band Festival Tuesday March 31

The Litchfield County Band Festival will be held on Tuesday March 31, 2009 7:00pm at the Warner Theater in Torrington, Conn. The Litchfield County Band Festival will feature the Litchfield High School Symphonic Band, Torrington High School Symphonic Band and Northwestern Regional 7 Concert Band and Wind Symphony. Tickets can be purchased in the music office and the night of the concert. Tickets are $8 Adults, $5 Students.

Come out and support Music Education in Litchfield County!

United States Army Jazz Ambassadors coming to Torrington!

The Army Jazz Ambassadors will be presenting a FREE concert on Monday April 6, 2009 7:30pm at the Warner Theater in Torrington, Conn. Tickets are available at any Torrington Savings Bank location and Warner Theater Box Office. The Jazz Ambassadors is the United States Army's premier touring jazz orchestra. This 19-member big band, formed in 1969, has received great acclaim both at home and abroad performing America's original art form, jazz.

Concerts by the Jazz Ambassadors are designed to entertain all types of audiences. Custom compositions and arrangements highlight the group's creative talent and gifted soloists. Their diverse repertoire includes big band swing, bebop, Latin, contemporary jazz, standards, popular tunes, Dixieland, vocals, and patriotic selections.

The band has appeared in all fifty states, Canada, Mexico, Japan, India, and throughout Europe. Notable performances include concerts at international jazz festivals in Montreux, Switzerland; Newport, Rhode Island; Toronto, Canada; Brussels, Belgium; and the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands. In 1995, the Jazz Ambassadors performed in England, Wales, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Czech Republic in commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of the end of World War II. The band has also been featured in unique joint concerts with major orchestras, including the Detroit and Baltimore symphonies.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Congratulations THS Jazz!

On Saturday March 7, 2009 the Torrington High School Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Combo participated in the Enrico Fermi High School Jazz Festival. The THS Jazz Combo received a bronze rating and David Pashley, Alto Sax, received an outstanding musician award. The THS Jazz Ensemble received a silver medal and Brian Nowell, Trumpet, received an oustanding musican award.

The THS Jazz Ensemble will next perform at the Torrington Public Schools Night of Jazz Tuesday March 10, 2009 7:00pm at Torrington Middle School. NIght of Jazz will feature the TMS Jazz Ensemble, THS Jazz Ensemble and the Award Winning Central Connecticut State University Jazz Ensemble.
Concert is FREE and open to the public.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Victoria Measles awarded $20K

Register Citizen - Sunday March 1, 2009

TORRINGTON — A local student has been selected to receive a $20,000 scholarship from a national organization.

Victoria L. Measles was selected by the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans to receive the National Scholarship Award. Measles was chosen because she had overcome great obstacles in her life while demonstrating a strength of character, a commitment to pursue college and a desire to contribute to society, the organization said.

Being able to receive the award was a “huge surprise,” Measles said.

“I feel so lucky to get it,” she said. “I didn’t expect it... so many people applied for it.”

Measles was one of two recipients of the scholarship in the state, and one of 104 throughout the country. She is scheduled to go on an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., from April 1 to April 5 to receive the award.

In the nation’s capital, Measles will join other recipients of the scholarship in listening to speeches of former members and partake in the formal award ceremony. The organization provides nearly $7 million in annual awards for need-based students.

Measles is the sister of Maryann Measles, who was murdered in 1997 at age 13.

A Torrington High School senior, Measles is a heavily active in the theater scene at both school and the Warner Theatre. She has held star roles in “Kiss Me Kate,” “Taming of the Shrew,” “Peter Pan,” “Cinderalla” and “The Skin of Our Teeth.”

Opening in May, she will star as Gretchen in “Seussical the Musical.”

Measles is part of the Thespian Troupe No. 611, the Chamber Choir, Interact Club and School Set Design. Measles also actively volunteers for organizations such as the Penguin Plunge and the Salvation Army.

Apart from school and theater, she also works during evenings at Coffee House Plus.

“I think I’m pretty self-made when it comes to getting money for myself, doing the whole college thing,” she said.

Measles noted that she’s the first one in her family to attend college. Her top choices are Fordham and Pace, and while she has yet to hear from Fordham, Pace has already offered her a $15,000 academic scholarship. Fordham, however, is still the top choice, she said.

Despite the seemingly endless process of applying to college, the application to the Horatio Alger Scholarship process took more time, she said. Short essays, recommendations and transcripts were required.

“They asked you not only about yourself, but personal questions about your past,” she said. “How much in your life you have had to deal with, and how you overcame any of those things.”

Measles plans on continuing theater by taking it up as a major. She hopes also to do internships and to study abroad in England and France, where she can use her proficient knowledge of French, she said.

Monday, February 9, 2009

THS Musicians earn All-State Honors!

Congratulations to the following THS Music students for making the Connecticut All-State Music Festival. The CMEA All-State Festival will take place at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, CT April 2-4, 2009.

Connecticut All-State Jazz Ensemble
Brian Nowell - Trumpet

Connecticut All-State Chorus
Garrett Rapsilber - Tenor

Connecticut All-State Band
John DelVento - Euphonium

Connecticut All-State Orchestra
Bridget Bertoldi - Flute
Michelle Wallace - Bassoon

Saturday, January 24, 2009


We are holding our final two fundraisers before the Carnegie trip.
If you are interested in tickets, please contact

Lynn Morin at *489-2294 - ext. 1716 or
THS (860)489-2294)or ask any Chamber Choir member.

Applebees Pancake Breakfast—Saturday, January 31st from 8:00-10:00 a.m.
Pre-sold tickets are $5.00 each and include three pancakes, two pieces of bacon and unlimited coffee/orange juice.
To be held at the Torrington Applebees at 1660 East Main St.

Torrington Elks Club Dinner—Wednesday, February 11th from 4:30-7:00 p.m. Pre-sold tickets are $8.00 each and include pasta dinner, salad, rolls, dessert, coffee/tea. Bar will sell $1.00 sodas and other beverages.

Torrington educator gets national technology award

BY JIM MOORE REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN - Saturday, January 17, 2009 3:12 AM EST

TORRINGTON — A music technology education program that Wayne Splettstoeszer built at Torrington High School, byte by byte, has earned national recognition.

"He not only does great things with the kids, he also shares that," said Thomas Rudolph, a teacher in Pennsylvania and president of the Technology Institute for Music Educators, which is recognizing Splettstoeszer as a role model and innovator for music teachers nationwide.

A growing list of high schools and colleges use Splettstoeszer's lesson plans, assignments and exercises which he posts online for fellow educators to use, Rudolph said.

The kids are keen on him, too.

Kasey Graves, 18, a senior in Splettstoeszer's introductory-level music technology class, said her teacher is "pretty sick," which translates from teen speak to "cool."

Graves and junior Mitchell Wimmer were among many students who crowded the school's computer lab Friday, putting the finishing touches on projects that mixed digital photography with original soundtracks created by computer software.

"I can learn how to write music, and be my own producer," said Wimmer, who plans to make a career in music.

Splettstoeszer, 38, who also teaches traditional instrumental music, will accept next month the 2009 Mike Kovins TIME Teacher of the Year Award during a conference in San Antonio, Texas. The award, Rudolph said, is competitive and reserved for a teacher who leads the way on the cutting edge of music education.

"It's a huge honor," Splettstoeszer said.

Splettstoeszer's technology class is a tough get. There is a waiting list every year for Music Technology I, and his yearlong Music Technology II class is always full.

Students in the advanced class learn how to produce radio commercials and film scores, using software and synthesizers. Students in the introductory class set poetry and short story excerpts to music, often writing original work that brings English into the mix.

Interim Principal Marsha Olsen said that kind of integration is the way of the future.

"That's one of our focuses that we're going to be working on next year," Olsen said. "Mr. Splettstoeszer is at the forefront of that."

Splettstoeszer said the electronic approach allows him to reach a generation of students who come to school armed with iPods and laptops. The elective courses also open the door to music appreciation for students who may have never picked up a traditional instrument.

"I've had valedictorians sitting next to future music majors sitting next to special education students," Splettstoeszer said. "All of them can have success."

Splettstoeszer started the technology program from scratch 13 years ago, learning as he went.

"My first couple years were learning five minutes before class and going in and teaching it," he recalled.

"There was no one I could go to. Music technology was in its infancy."

Splettstoeszer said he's just going with the flow.

"The kids of today are using technology in every aspect of their life," he said. "We need to reach them."

Thursday, January 8, 2009

THS choir shows it knows how to get to Carnegie Hall

Thursday, January 8, 2009 1:44 AM EST


TORRINGTON — A local high school choir is holding a benefit concert this weekend with the goal of raising money for a performance at Carnegie Hall in March.

The Torrington High School Chamber Choir will be holding the benefit concert at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 11 at the First United Methodist Church, 21 Fern Drive. The 30-person group is scheduled to perform pieces from their recent winter concert as well as some new ones, said Lynn Morin, choir director.

Music pieces will include Ave Maria, which will feature a trio, Love Psalm and a piece on Harriet Tubman. Apart from the large performance there will be other smaller vocal acts, namely duets and a small double quartet, Morin said. Some members also have prepared piano solos and flute solos, as well as other vocal solos used to audition for local regional festivals, she said.

As an example of one of the pieces high school student Rachel Pelchat, 16, will be performing a flute solo of Bach Sonata E flat Major, 2nd Movement, Pelchat said.

The concert is free to enter, but the group will accept donations, in a fund raising effort for a trip to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall on Sunday, March 8. The Chamber Choir is looking to raise $10,000 to $12,000 within the next few months to offset costs, Morin said. Currently the group has raised $2,500.

“We’re hoping for a good turnout,” she said. “So we can help these kids meet their fund raising goal.”

The entire trip in total costs over $24,000 and each student would have to spend $950. Many members, however, have already paid some initial costs and done their own individual fund raising, Morin said.

“Part of the big expense is paying for their hotel cost,” she said. The group is expected to be in New York for 10-12 hours of rehearsals, she said.

Some areas have seen costs reduced, such as the Kelly Transit Company which donated the round trip bus transportation for the event.

The Chamber Choir will be holding a few more events in the future, namely a pancake breakfast, to assist in the fund raising efforts, Morin said. All finances must be tied up and ready by early February, 30 days before the performance, she said.

Apart from offering donations the Chamber Choir will be pre-selling CDs of the concert, which will record on site, which should be available within a couple weeks, said Sue Pelchat, Rachel’s mother. Candy and other items will also be sold, she said.

A reception is scheduled to follow the performance. Tickets for the Carnegie Hall event will go on sale on their website 30 days before the performance.

Ronald DeRosa can be reached by e-mail at