Students And Volunteers Make NHS Winter Extravaganza Home Show A Success

Published: February 08, 2019 at 07:00 am


The Newtown High School Marching Band & Guard hosted its annual Winter Extravaganza on Saturday, February 2, in the high school’s gymnasium.

The Musical Arts Conference (MAC) event began with the singing of the national anthem by NHS student Michael Spanedda and presentation of colors by NHS students Ben Taylor and Andrew Bazuro of Boy Scout Troop 770. The competition included 18 visiting color guard teams, and the four-hour event concluded with highlighted exhibition performances by Newtown Percussion, Newtown Junior Varsity Guard, and Newtown Varsity Guard.

Towards the end of the evening, seniors from Newtown’s Varsity Guard and Newtown Percussion were recognized. Color Guard members Emma Farrington and Nicole Keeping will be graduating this year, as well as Newtown Percussion’s Avan Sheridan (bass drum), Gabe Stewart (cymbals), Aidan Schmid (tenor drums), Walker Russell (center snare), Kevin Rau (center marimba), and Ethan Ledina (synthesizer). The evening concluded with an Awards Ceremony, during which trophies were presented to each competing Color Guard by division. First Selectman Dan Rosenthal, Superintendent of Schools Dr Lorrie Rodrigue, NHS Principal Dr Kimberly Longobuocco, and Director of Visual and Musical Arts Michelle Hiscavich attended the event to cheer on students and participate as trophy presenters.

Nearly 100 parent and student volunteers, under the leadership of Winter Extravaganza Chair Pia Ledina, served as planning committee members, staging and flow managers, the Extravaganza Cafe prep and sales staff team, parking attendants, guest ambassadors, bake sale and candy/air-gram sales teams, chaperones, pit crew members, and more, along with local EMTs, NHS administration, custodial, security, and cafeteria staff. Everyone worked in partnership to ensure that participating ensembles and spectators enjoyed a wonderful evening in Newtown.

Newtown Varsity Guard will perform its show “Hypnosis” next at the World Guard International (WGI) competition in Salem, Mass., on Saturday, February 16. On the same day, Newtown Junior Varsity Guard (show theme “It’s Coming”) and Newtown Percussion (show theme “Look Up”) will be competing in New Milford at the MAC competition.

Looking ahead, Newtown Percussion will be attending the WGI World Championship Competition in Dayton, Ohio, in April 2019. In order to help offset travel expenses, the team is seeking donations. To donate online, visit or mail donations to NHSBPC, c/o NHSWP 2019 Dayton Fundraiser, Box 3333, Newtown CT 06470. NHSBPC (Newtown High School Band Parent Corporation) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

For more information about winter guard and winter percussion, visit

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