Support Jack Cunningham’s Eagle Scout Project, Boy Scout Troop 3 – Caldwell

Hungry For Music LogoJack Cunningham, a Junior at West Essex High School, and member of the West Essex High School Band & Orchestra, is coordinating a community collection of used musical instruments through Hungry for Music. Hungry for Music is a non-profit 501(3)(c) organization that will refurbish ANY used instruments they are provided with and donate them to children in schools who would otherwise not be able to afford to play.

To donate, bring your used instrument to any West Essex Spring Concert.

Click here for more information on how to donate and for concert dates and times.

Good luck Jack!


Gear up for Summer with Great New Items!

The West Essex Band Online Store is open from May 3 to 19 for our SPRING 2019 SALE!  Don’t miss this opportunity to purchase West Essex Band and Marching Knights summer clothes, including shorts, T’s, tanks and much more.  Stock up now for Band Camp!  Merchandise pick-up date & time to be announced.

Click here to access the store now!

Clothing Sale Flyer - 04.15.2019


Congratulations Gabe Ruszala on Achieving 1st Chair Trombone!

Sophomore Gabriel Ruszala

Sophomore Gabriel Ruszala

For the second year in a row, Sophomore Gabe Ruszala successfully auditioned for the All-State Jazz Ensemble, this year achieving 1st Chair Tenor Trombone from many who auditioned from across New Jersey.

Gabe will be performing with other top high school musicians under the direction of long-time Count Basie Big Band drummer, Mr. Dennis Mackrel. You can see Gabe perform with the All-State Jazz Band next fall, November 15, 2019, at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, New Jersey.

Congratulations Gabe!


Ensemble Earns a Score of 81.6 to Place First in Chapter Championships

The West Essex Indoor Percussion Ensemble won first place at the Tournament Indoor Association (TIA) Chapter X Championship competition held at Fair Lawn High School on April 28, 2019.

Indoor Percussion Ensemble receives 1st Place Banner at TIA Indoor Championships

Indoor Percussion Ensemble receives 1st Place Banner at TIA Indoor Championships

The group earned a score of 81.6 in Scholastic A Standstill Percussion to finish at their highest this season with their show entitled, “Dreams and Nightmares.”

Congratulations to all the musicians and instructors Ms McAloon and Mr. Gerbasi for a great season!

Click here to see more pictures on our Photos page!


Nine West Essex Musicians Among the Ninth Annual Ensemble

The Essex County Honor Band is a celebration and collaboration of the many outstanding High School Band programs throughout Essex County. West Essex once again hosted the Honor Band, which is comprised of nearly 100 musicians from 13 participating schools. The concert was held on Tuesday April 9, 2019.

Back, L to R: Eugene Rozental, Nicholas Petrarca, Nicholas Stampone, Mr. Fabrizio, Julia Gesell; Front, L to R: Madison Rombough, Isabella Bonvini, Liliana Patracuolla, Catherine Marino, Gillian Rogers

Back, L to R: Eugene Rozental, Nicholas Petrarca, Nicholas Stampone, Mr. Fabrizio, Julia Gesell; Front, L to R: Madison Rombough, Isabella Bonvini, Liliana Patracuolla, Catherine Marino, Gillian Rogers

Nine West Essex musicians participated in the ensemble this year, which was directed by Dr. William Berz, the Director of the Department of Music at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. Selections included Hosts of Freedom by Karl King, Festivo by Vaclav Nelhybel, Kentucky 1800 by Clare Grundman, and Foundry by John Mackey.

During the day-long rehearsal prior to the concert, the West Essex Band Boosters provided musicians with healthy snacks and refreshments.

Congratulations to all our talented musicians!


The West Essex Music Department Enjoys a Fun & Successful Trip to Disney!

From March 29 through April 2, the West Essex High School Band, Choir & Orchestra enjoyed an incredible Disney Experience with performances and workshops the students will remember for a lifetime!

Marching Knights on Main Street U.S.A.

Marching Knights on Main Street U.S.A.

Both the Choir and Orchestra impressed visitors with outstanding performances at Disney Springs, while the Marching Knights lit up Main Street USA with patriotic musical selections.  The full Concert Band & Symphonic Winds enjoyed a workshop with professional Disney musicians during which they rehearsed and performed familiar selections, including some from Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark.  Even the instructors had roles to play (although you’ll need to ask the students how that went).

Plenty of parents and extended families made the trek to Walt Disney World to support the ensembles and enjoyed a memorable time of their own.

The West Essex Band Boosters offers our congratulations to all of our students for representing West Essex High School so professionally and responsibly, and to Ms. Swanick, Mr. Fabrizio, Ms. Shroyer and Ms. Mateyka (and to all the chaperones and Nurse Rombough) for providing these students an incredible and enriching experience.

And a big thank you to Band Parents Ray Stampone and Frank Matarazzo for volunteering your truck-driving skills to ensure the equipment, uniforms and luggage made it to their destinations throughout the trip on time!

Click here for a few more photos!


Good Luck at Disney World – Band, Choir & Orchestra!

Mickey with SignThe West Essex Band Boosters wish all of our High School musical ensembles and Directors – Band, Choir & Orchestra – a fun and successful trip to Disney World!

After four years of anticipation, your time to  enjoy the Disney magic has come!

Best of Luck!!

And…a HUGE thank you to Ray Stampone & Frank Matarazzo for trucking the equipment and luggage to Florida – we are grateful for your generosity!!


Indoor Percussion Enjoys a 77.3 Score to Place 2nd in Standstill Class

Congratulations to the West Essex Indoor Percussion Ensemble, Ms. McAloon and Mr. Gerbasi for a terrific performance at the Pemberton High School Competition on Saturday March 23, 2019.

2019 Indoor Percussion Ensemble

2019 Indoor Percussion Ensemble

The group scored a 77.3 in their performance of Dreams and Nightmares, a 10 point jump from their previous performance at Triton High School.  The score secured a 2nd place win in the Standstill class.

Next up is the final competition of the season, on Sunday April 28, 2019 at Fairlawn High School.

NJAJE Region Jazz Auditions


Congratulations to Ahren Alberto, Junior (Piano) and Gabe Ruszala, Sophomore (Trombone) for successfully auditioning for the New Jersey Association for Jazz Education (NJAJE) Region 1 Jazz Ensemble!  

Ahren Alberto & Gabe Ruszala, Region 1 Jazz

Ahren Alberto & Gabe Ruszala, Region 1 Jazz

Ahren and Gabe will work with other talented high school students from across North Jersey performing challenging and entertaining jazz selections.  They will perform under the direction of Dr. Jeffrey Kunkel, Coordinator of Jazz Studies and the Director of the Montclair State University Jazz Ensemble.

As with other Area, Region & All State ensembles, auditioning for a coveted seat in this group is no small task and reflects intense dedication and talent.

Come enjoy and incredible evening of music! The concert will be held on Sunday April 7, 2019 at 4pm at Mountain Lakes High School.


Eighth & Ninth Graders Represent West Essex at the North Jersey Junior Region Concert

L to R: Dante Ragusa, Mr. Fitzke, Gianna Lodato, Mr. Fabrizio, Andrew Marino

L to R: Dante Ragusa, Mr. Fitzke, Gianna Lodato, Mr. Fabrizio, Andrew Marino

Three students represented West Essex High School and Middle School at the 2019 All North Jersey Junior Region Symphonic Winds and Concert Band concert held on Sunday March 3, 2019 at Randolph High School.

Congratulations to eighth graders, Dante Ragusa (Tuba) and Gianna Lodato (Battery Percussion), as well as freshman Andrew Marino (Mallets Percussion) for terrific performances.

The Symphonic Winds, which included Gianna and Andrew, was conducted by Mr. Michael Russo of Morristown High School, while the Concert Band, including Dante, was conducted by Anthony Wayne Middle School’s Mr. Christopher DeWilde.