Ms. Erica McPartland (Program Director) is in her twenty-third year of teaching instrumental music in New Jersey, eighteenth at Macopin Middle School. For the past seven years she has been Macopin Middle School’s 8th Grade Band Director, the first eleven, the 7th Grade Band Director. She earned her Bachelor of Music from Trenton State College (now The College of New Jersey) where she studied Alto Saxophone with Al Regni. She was the West Milford High School Highlander Band Assistant Marching Band Director and the 7th & 8th Grade Jazz Band Director her first ten years in West Milford. Miss McPartland’s professional affiliations include NAfME and the NJMEA.
Mr. Matt Gramata (Saxophone/Co-Director) has served as the Associate Director of Bands and Director of Jazz Studies at West Milford High School since 2010. He is the assistant director for the West Milford Highlander Marching Band, directs the Symphonic Band, serves as the woodwind specialist, conducts the pit orchestra, and guides all aspects of the jazz program. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in music education from The College of New Jersey and Master’s degree in music education from The University of Florida.
As a saxophonist and woodwind specialist, Matt has appeared throughout the New York/Tri-State area as a featured soloist with concert band and orchestra, in studio recording projects, various jazz ensembles, pit orchestras, and in other freelance capacities. He credits much of his performance passion, skills, and musical knowledge to the many fantastic teachers he has worked with including John Perillo, Kathleen Mitchell, Lynn Klock, Steve Wilson, Brandon Wright, Nathan Childers, Lenny Pickett, and Chase Baird on saxophone, Kimberly O’Hare on flute, and Joseph D’Auguste on clarinet.
Mr. Gramata maintains a very competitive private studio where he teaches saxophone, clarinet, and flute students. His private students have been accepted into honor ensembles up to the national level. His students who’ve gone on to pursue music at the collegiate level have been accepted to music programs at Eastman School of Music, Indiana University, The University of Miami, Northwestern University, the University of Michigan, Ithaca College, the Hartt School of Music, and many more.
Ms. Lyn Lowndes (Clarinet) has been the Band Director at the Richard Butler School
since 2000 , is the Assistant Marching Band Director at Butler High School
and conducts the pit musicians for the school musicals. She completed her undergraduate studies at William Paterson University, where she received a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education in 2000 and a Masters of Science Degree in Educational Technology from Ramapo College in 2007.
Ms. Lowndes is an Adjunct Professor of Music at William Paterson
University, President of the Butler Education Association and the Vice
President of the North Jersey Area Band - Junior High Division. She has
also been the manager of both, Area and Junior Region Bands. Ms.
Lowndes has performed with the Ridgewood Concert Band (n/k/a the New
Jersey Wind Symphony). Her private teachers have included Mr. Richard
Summers and Mr. Karl Hermann. Ms. Lowndes has received Butler’s “Making a Difference Award” in 2003, and “Teacher of the Year” in 2011.
Mrs. Janell Kallimanis (flute) is the Band Director at Sussex Middle School where she has taught for 31 years. For a time, she was a “shared” teacher with High Point Regional High School as a Band Director, Woodwind Instructor, and Color Guard Advisor. While working with only the 8th Grade Band during that time, she prepared students to enter into the high school band. She then switched to full-time at Sussex MS and now teaches 6th , 7th and 8th Grades. She also has taught in the Mount Tabor Summer Music program in
Parsippany as the flute instructor and Intermediate Band Director.
Mrs. Kallimanis earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Music Education from Lebanon Valley College, Annville, PA. She has also completed graduate level studies at Central Connecticut State, Villanova University, and Lebanon Valley College.
As an active performer and educator, Mrs. Kallimanis has run a successful flute studio. Many of her students have been participants in County, Area, Region and All-State Honors ensembles. She has also performed with the Seton Hall Chorus, the Children’s Chorus of Sussex County, and in the World’s Largest Flute Ensemble at the 2009 National Flute Association Convention in New York. She has played in numerous high school and
college musicals, this year for Wallkill Valley Reg. HS and High Point Reg. HS., and as a soloist at many weddings, church services and honors ensembles.
Mrs. Tamara McLaughlin (Trumpet) brings with her over thirty years of music performing and pedagogical experience to her teaching. She has a Master’s Degree in Trumpet Performance and a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education with a trumpet concentration. As a trumpet player, Mrs. McLaughlin has held positions in the New Mexico Brass Quintet, Albuquerque (NM) Chamber Orchestra, Dubuque Symphony Orchestra (IA), Cedar Rapids Concert Band (IA) and most recently, The New Jersey Wind Symphony. As a cornet player, she has made her mark as a soloist with several of the premier competitive and professional British style brass bands across the United States. Currently, she is planning to be a performing guest as part of the Athena Brass Band for the International Women’s Brass Conference in Tempe, AZ 2019. Mrs. McLaughlin is the Director of Music at Ringwood Christian School in Ringwood, NJ. In her spare time, she is a freelance performer and private lesson teacher.
Mr. Christopher DeWilde (Low Brass) has taught in the Wayne Township Public Schools for 21 years and is currently an instrumental music teacher at Anthony Wayne Middle School. Previously, he taught at Schuyler-Colfax Middle School (13 years) and Wayne Hills High School (5 years). He currently serves as the assistant marching band director for Ramapo HS and Passaic Valley HS. In previous years, he was the marching band director at Wayne Hills HS and was on the marching band staff of Montville HS, Morris Knolls HS, and West Essex HS.
Mr. DeWilde plays trombone and euphonium and has performed with the Hawthorne Caballeros, Metropolitan Brass Band, Hanover Wind Symphony and the New Jersey Wind Symphony (formerly Ridgewood Concert Band). He also has played for church services and numerous pit orchestras in Northern New Jersey. As a conductor, he has directed pit orchestras, served as the substitute conductor for the Glen Rock Pops and was the guest conductor for the 2003 Junior Area Band and 2019 Junior Region Concert Band.
Mr. DeWilde is actively involved with the North Jersey School Music Association and North Jersey Area Band. His professional affiliations include Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, NAfME and the NJMEA. He completed his bachelor’s degree at William Paterson University and has taken graduate classes at the University of Scranton and William Paterson University.
Mr. Timothy Jedlicka (Percussion) attended The Conservatory of Music at SUNY Purchase College in Purchase, NY where he studied Percussion Performance with Ray DesRoches and Dr. Dominick Donato. In the years since, he has taught dozens of private students, has been a percussion instructor for a number of high school marching bands and percussion ensembles, has run various jazz/rock band programs at local schools, and was a percussion mentor with the Sussex County Youth Orchestra for 17 years.
Tim also works as a professional musician playing for school musicals, orchestra gigs, and plays drums with at least 3 bands on a regular basis for club gigs, weddings, and corporate events. For his “day gig”, Tim is an Educational Sales Representative with The Music Shop in Boonton, NJ where he has been supporting Music Education programs in schools for over 7 years by providing instrument rentals and repairs as well as any other needs to music programs throughout Northern NJ.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the West Milford Concert Band Academy?
The goal of the West Milford Concert Band Academy is to provide students entering grades 6-8 an opportunity to continue their music study over the summer by gaining instruction in both a large ensemble and small group setting.
When does the Concert Band Academy take place?
The program runs from July 13 to July 22, with a student performance on the 22nd at 12:00 pm.
Where will the program be held?
The concert band academy will be held at West Milford High School which is located at:
67 Highlander Drive
West Milford, NJ 07480
What is the typical daily schedule?
The day is broken into three 1-hour sessions. 9am-10am will be woodwind sectional/masterclass, 10am-11am will be full concert band rehearsal, and 11am-12pm will be brass & percussion sectional/masterclass.
So if you are a woodwind student, your daily schedule runs from 9-11am.
If you are a brass or percussion student, your daily schedule runs from 10am-12pm.
What is the tuition/registration fee and how can I submit that payment?
The tuition for the week program is $200 per student. Registration and payment can be completed online and can be found on this webpage, or can be sent to:
West Milford Concert Band Academy
P.O. Box 603
West Milford, NJ 07480
Checks should be made out to WMBPA
What are students required to bring?
Students are required to bring:
> Their instrument
> Their music
> A pencil
> Any instrument accessories that are needed (mutes, reeds, cymbals, sticks, etc.)
What will the students be working on?
All students will participate in a large ensemble where they will play concert band literature aimed at their grade level. In the group lessons, teachers will be discussing concepts specific to their instrument, such as embouchure, tone production, articulation, phrasing, style, etc. Students may also work on additional material in their lesson groups such as scales, etudes, and chamber music.
What time and where will the Friday concert be?
The concert on the 22nd will be in the West Milford High School Auditorium and begin at 12 PM following the completion of the daily program.
To register by mail:
Please download and complete the application form below and send the application form along with cash or check (made to WMBPA) to:
West Milford Concert Band Academy
P.O. Box 603
West Milford, NJ 07480-0603