The Ridge High School Marching Band won second place in the 2013 Yamaha Cup competition held at MetLife Stadium this past Saturday, competing in group IVA with 10 other high school bands.
Ridge finished with a score of 76.15, which was only a razor thin margin behind the winning score of 76.213 from Northern Highlands High School. Ridge also received the caption award for Best Effect.
The MetLife stadium drew large crowds throughout the day as 54 New Jersey High School bands competed, The rich variety of performances included a variety of brass, woodwinds and percussion instrumented music performed with high energy parade and color guard dance movements.
The Ridge Marching Band had one of the strongest turnout of fans in the stadiums, cheering the 81-member band with tooting horns, waving flags and banners, and the traditional ringing of cow bells, said Roger Gurnani, who releases publicity for the band.
Director of Ridge bands Dan Zugale said he was pleased with the performance. “So far this season, the band has worked extremely hard and the results have been outstanding," he said. "Our show is very complex and physically demanding this year and the students have risen to the challenge.”
The band’s music this year features "Across the Universe," by The Beatles, "I am the Doctor," from Dr. Who, "Jupiter from the Planets," by Gustav Holst, "Written in the Stars," by Tinie Tempah, and the theme music from Star Trek.
A big part of the band’s success are its 12 Student Leaders:
Drum Major: Isabella Cedeno
Assistant Drum Major: Patrick Clarke and Bianca Jurewicz
Band Manager: Abigail Krieck
Color Guard Captains: Sarah Campbell and Hope Feuerbach
Woodwind Captains: Sophie Kieftenbeld and Benjamin Kopchains
Brass Captains: Julia Fackelman and Rowan Lambie
Battery Percussion Captain: Josh Kluger
Pit Percussion Captain: Ryan Tevlin
The student leaders provide support and mentoring to their fellow team mates. Bianca Jurewicz has been playing musical instruments since she was in third grade. She saw a marching band performance when she was in eighth grade and decided to give it a try when she joined the high school two years ago. She loves to share her passion for music and marching techniques with the new members of the band. She wants to study engineering in college and aspires to become a Disney Imagineer.
“As a student leader we must motivate, aid and work with fellow students in order to make our show better," said senior Sophie Kieftenbeld. "Part of being on the band is learning how to work with other people.” She has been playing musical instruments since 4th grade. She said she likes music, math and science but is keeping her options open for a major in college.
Patrick Clarke is a junior, and this is his third year on the Ridge Marching Band. He is also a member of the Bushwackers Drum and Bugle Corps, in Princeton. He said, “This year our band is certainly the best band I have seen since I joined. With the band continuing to grow, our success seems to be on path to outdo any previous years.”
These student leaders are truly an inspiration for the younger members to excel in their performances and become future leaders of the Ridge Marching Band. Ridge came in first place in the Hunterdon Central Marching Band competition on Sept. 21. They will compete in local competitions at Hillsborough High School on Oct. 12, and the U.S. Bands National Championships on Nov. 2.
Ridge to host own competition at end of month
Ridge will also host its own competition on Oct. 26 at Lee Field in Basking Ridge.
Additional information about the band can be obtained from the band’s website: www.RidgeMarchingBand.com.