The Numbers Don't Lie

There’s something special going on with Infinity Percussion as we head into the 2014 season. With a record-breaking 130+ members attending auditions for INFINITY and INFINITY 2, there is a very exciting vibe that is being felt throughout the central Florida area. We would like to say thank you to everyone who came out to auditions, and congratulations to everyone who was offered a position with our 2014 ensembles!

Returning to the visual design team for their fourth time working together is Drill Designer, Noah Bellamy, and Visual Caption Head, Arthur Goodman. INFINITY also welcomes new members: Program Coordinator, Andy Ebert, Battery Caption Head & Arranger, James Sparling, and Front Ensemble Caption Head & Arranger, Samantha Cope. The entire design team is excited about the high level of talent and skill the members showcased throughout the audition process and is ready to get the 2014 production underway.

See you on the floor!

New Moves in 2014

We are excited to announce the addition of Madison Weir to the visual team for INFINITY 2014! Madison brings a fresh pair of eyes and a new set of ideas to movement as she has acquired a wide range of visual and dance experience, but has not been a performer with an ensemble of the marching arts.

For more information about Madison and her performance experience, read below for a short bio!

Born and raised in Orlando, Florida, Madison has strived for perfection in the dance industry since the age of 2! She is a graduate from the Lois Cowels Harrison School for the Arts in Lakeland, Florida and attended Davenport School for the Arts in Davenport, FL. She has also trained with The Orlando Ballet and Central Florida Ballet. 

Madison has experience in ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz, tap, improv, musical theatre, and swing. She is currently a dancer in the Superstar Parade at Universal Studios and teaches dance at Studio 5D Dynasty in Oviedo, FL. Currently enrolled at Valencia College, Madison is pursuing a degree in nutrition.

  

Three's Company

Good things come in threes - isn’t that the saying? Well they do at INFINITY! Instructing the infamous “Moose Pack” snare section of INFINITY 2014 will be three talented technicians with a background of diverse and successful experiences throughout the marching arts acitivity. We are excited to welcome Zerick, Spencer, and Danny to the INFINITeam for the upcoming season!

Read below for a brief bio on each of these new additions to the team.


Zerick Randolph - Snare Technician

Zerick Randolph - Snare Technician

Zerick Randolph began his love for percussion at a young age in Fort Walton Beach, FL. While attending Choctawhatchee High School, he also performed with the Style Marchers and indoor percussion ensembles. During his time as a student at Choctawhatchee HS under the direction of Shane Gwaltney, Zerick earned a WGI Open Class Medal in 2002 as well as a WGI World Class Medal in 2003. 

Zerick went on after high school to perform with the WGI Independent World Class championship ensemble, Music City Mystique (MCM). He performed as a member of the snare section for three seasons with MCM, earning a gold medal in 2004 and 2006, as well as a silver medal in 2007.  

As an instructor, Zerick has a strong history of working with scholastic percussion ensembles. In 2005, Zerick served as the Snare Tech for Choctawhatchee High School. From 2005 to 2006, he also served as the Percussion Director for Fort Walton Beach High School and Navarre High School, along with being the Battery Tech for Pace High School. Zerick was also the Percussion Director at Crestview High School for seven years, and was also the Percussion Arranger for two.

Zerick currently resides in Tampa, Florida with his wife, Nakia, and daughter, Melody.

 

Spencer Murray - Snare Technician Intern

Spencer Murray - Snare Technician Intern

Spencer Murray started his percussive career at the age of 8, when he began private lessons from a former section leader of The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps. Throughout middle and high school, Spencer competed in award-winning concert, orchestral, marching, and jazz ensembles. After graduating in 2006, he attended the University of Illinois, where he majored in Music Education. Spencer spent four years as a member of the Marching Illini Drumline, three of which as a section leader. Aside from being a member, Spencer also served as the Composer & Arranger, as well as an instructor for two years.

Spencer’s drum corps career started in 2006 when he became a member of the snare section of the Blue Stars Drum and Bugle Corps. After taking a hiatus in 2007, he returned to the Blue Stars for the 2008 season, and aged-out with his home-state favorite, The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps. During his three years in DCI, Spencer was a student of Brent Montgomery, Brian Blume, Eric Thompson, Nic Angelis, Carl Eppler, Tim Maynard, Brian Perez, Brian Tinkel, and Jim Casella.

Spencer was the Snare Tech for The Cavaliers’ sponsored Independent Open Class ensemble, Green Thunder Percussion, in 2011 and assisted the visual team at INFINITY in 2012. He is currently the Battery Instructor at Apopka High School, the Battery Arranger and Instructor at Boone HS, and works full time as a drum lead for Universal Studios’ Superstar Parade.

Spencer currently resides in Orlando, Florida with his fiancé, Lindsay, and daughter, Harlynn.

 

Danny Raymond - Snare Technician Consultant

Danny Raymond - Snare Technician Consultant

Danny Raymond is active as a performer, instructor, judge and author. He is a twenty-three year performing musician at Walt Disney World and is currently a member of the popular group “Jammitors” at EPCOT. He is the 1989 and 1990 Drum Corps Associates Individual Snare Drum Champion and has published solo compositions. In 2008, Tapspace Publications published his snare solo DVD, “Let It Rip”, Solos For Snare Drum.

Danny’s involvement in the marching activity also spans many years. He was a member of the New York Skyliners Drum and Bugle Corps as well as an instructor for such corps as the Syracuse Brigadiers and Boston Crusaders. Danny was the percussion arranger and caption head for 2005, 2006 DCA finalist Carolina Gold Drum and Bugle Corps, as well as a staff member of the 2009 DCI World Class Santa Clara Vanguard Drum and Bugle Corps. He enjoys judging in various circuits around the country for marching band and indoor percussion competitions. In addition to providing private instruction at Drums2Go drum shop in Orlando, FL., he is a member of the Bryan Mays Trio, a freelance Jazz/fusion group.

His clinic performances have seen him travel throughout the United States, Canada, Japan and Europe. Danny is very proud to serve as an educational clinician/endorser for Pearl/Adams, REMO Drumheads, Vic Firth Sticks and Mallets, Zildjian Cymbals and StickTape. For more information, please visit his website at www.backsticks.com.

2013 Age-Outs Join The World Team

Former members Josh and Marvin have been amazing members of INFINITY during the last few seasons, and it is with great pleasure to announce that they will be continuing their presence with the World ensemble as they join the 2014 instructional staff! Both of these guys have great experience and skill to assist with both the cymbal sections and the overall visual presence of the ensemble.

For more information about Josh and Marvin, continue reading below!


Josh Batson grew up and started his percussion education in Jacksonville, FL. After graduation from Sandalwood HS, Josh attended Florida State College in Jacksonville, and also performed with the Teal Sound Drum & Bugle Corps in 2009 as a member of the cymbal section.

After Teal Sound, Josh became a member of INFINITY Percussion in 2010, serving as the cymbal section leader from 2011 to his age-out in 2013. Realizing the increasing visual demands of the cymbal section, he began focusing his attention to the visual aspects of the activity - improving his skills and awareness of precision.

Josh continues to call Jacksonville his home where he also plays quads for the NFL Jacksonville Jaguars D-Line.


Marvin Valarezo was first introduced to the indoor percussion activity at Cypress Creek High School as a member of the front-ensemble in 2008. Upon graduation, Marvin joined Timber Creek Independent (TCI) for the 2009 season. After becoming a member of the cymbal line at the University of South Florida “Herd of Thunder” Marching Band in 2010, he then joined the USF indoor ensemble, Brahma, for the 2011 season. Marvin spent his final two indoor seasons with INFINITY Percussion, aging-out this past season as a valuable resource with the cymbal section.
As an educator, Marvin has instructed the Tampa Bay Thunder Drum and Bugle Corp cymbal line in 2012, and the Newsome High School indoor percussion cymbal line in 2013.
Marvin is currently pursuing two Bachelor's Degrees at the University of South Florida, the first in Music Studies in Clarinet Performance, and the second in Psychology. 

The Men Up Front

Instructing the front ensemble this season along side Samantha Cope will be Mitchell Beckman and Rily Franklin! Mitchell joined the INFINITeam for the 2013 season and we are so excited he will be returning, while Rily will be working with the ensemble for the first time this season after recently performing and working with Rhythm X over the past few seasons.

Please continue reading to learn more about the men up front for INFINITY 2014!


Mitchell Beckman is an active performer in the Orlando area. He can be found at Universal Studios as a drummer in the Superstar Parade, at Sea World with Zancos as a stilt drummer, and at Walt Disney World with the Royal Majesty Makers and Giggle Gang.  

When not in a theme park, Mitchell teaches and arranges for multiple ensembles around the state, including: Freedom HS, Boone HS, Buchholz HS, Apopka HS, Eastside HS, and Liberty HS.

Mitchell has attended both Rollins College and the University of Florida studying Music Performance. While at UF, Mitchell had the opportunity to perform with the University of Florida “Fighting Gator” Marching Band as a member of the Florida Drumline (FDL).

His drum corps experience includes three summers with the Boston Crusaders (2008-2010) where he was a member of the front ensemble and was also awarded 1st place for DCI I&E Percussion Ensemble in 2009. 


Rily Franklin was involved with both concert and marching percussion at Warsaw Community High School in Warsaw, Indiana receiving a bronze medal in PSCW at the 2005 WGI World Championships. He continued his indoor career in PIW with Evolution (2009), Rhythm X (2010-2012), and was also a member of the front ensemble with the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps (2011).

After graduating from Warsaw, Rily continued his education in percussion at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. Throughout his time at the university, Rily performed recitals, held clinics, and was asked to run the BSU drumline in 2010. Most recently Rily was a member of the front ensemble staff at Rhythm X for the 2013 season.
Rily now resides in St. Petersburg, Florida, working as a percussion instructor at numerous schools, as well as providing private lessons.

The Man In A New Role

With another great addition to the INFINITeam, we are very excited to announce that Lee Hansen will be taking on the Assistant Director position with the INFINITY Percussion organization.

To keep it simple, Lee is the man. That’s it! But for those of you who like to know the specifics as to why he is the man, a short bio has been included below to provide you with a few more details.


Lee Hansen attended McNeese State University in Lake Charles, LA studying Music Education from 1988-1989. In 1991, he attended The University of Iowa in Iowa City, with a focus on Music Performance. Later that year, Lee moved to Orlando, FL where he currently makes his home. For the past 22 years, he has been a Music Professional for the Walt Disney World Company and has been a Percussionist with: Future Corps at Walt Disney World’s EPCOT, the Village Beatniks for Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and The Main Street Philharmonic at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, in addition to being a sub performer with the Jammitors and the Spirit of America Fife & Drum group, both at EPCOT. 

Through the years, Lee has worked on many projects, among them being: Tapestry of Nations - 
The Millennium Celebration at EPCOT, the World Premier of Pocahontas in New York’s Central Park, ABC Radio, The Disney Channel, Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee, The Great Moscow Circus 
Tour of South Africa and Taiwan, performances with Peter Erskine and Susan Egan, and has gone on two tours of Japan. 

In the roles of Educator, Composer and Arranger, Lee has worked with multiple high school and collegiate programs throughout the midwest and southeast. His experience also extends to multiple independent organizations including The Boston Crusaders Drum & Bugle Corps from Boston, MA,  The Teal Sound Drum & Bugle Corps from Jacksonville, FL. As one of the founders in 2005, Lee served as the Battery Arranger for both the 2006 WGI PIO Championship ensemble, First Degree, and INFINITY Percussion until 2010.

Lee was a performing member for 12 years with the Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps organization, under the direction of Marty Hurley, Dr. John Wooton and Jeff Prosperie to name a few. As a member, he was named Drum Corps Midwest Champion Multi-Tenor Drummer (1989, 1991), and was also named the DCI World Champion Multi-Tenor Drummer in 1991.

Lee Hansen is an adjudicator for PASIC, has several pieces published through Row-Loff Percussion Publications, and is endorsed by Vic Firth Drumsticks and Mallets.

The Passing of the Torch

With all of the recent news, it’s clear to see that there are plenty of new and exciting things happening with our organization for the 2014 season. Certainly not to be left out, the front ensemble will be under new direction as we welcome Samantha Cope to INFINITY Percussion!

Sam brings to the team great knowledge and experience, both as a performer and staff member, and has previously worked with Noah (Visual Designer) and James (Battery Arranger & Caption Head) at various organizations including Rhythm X.

For more background information about Samantha, please continue to read below.


Samantha began her percussion career at Kings High School near Cincinnati, Ohio. After graduation she became a member of the Miami University Marching Band, and went on to join the independent percussion ensemble, Rhythm X, playing marimba for the 2005-2008 seasons. She was also a member of the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps in 2006 and 2007.

Teaching music and helping students realize their full potential is incredibly important to Sam. Currently, she teaches and arranges for high school groups both locally and across the country. Additionally, she was the Front Ensemble Caption Head for the Capital Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps in 2009, and was a guest clinician for the PAS Northwest Florida Day of Percussion in 2012. Sam was also a member of the front ensemble staff at Rhythm X for the 2009-2013 seasons. 

Sam graduated in 2008 from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio with a degree in English Education and currently resides in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Double Bass

We would like to welcome not one, but two new bass technicians to the World instructional team for the 2014 season! James Sparling (the INFINITY 2014 Battery Arranger and Caption Head) was on the instructional staff while John was a member of the Madison Scouts, and while Frank was a member at Rhythm X and Carolina Crown.

For more information about these exciting new additions, please read their biographies below.


Francisco Torres’ drum corps experience began in 2005 with the Kiwanis Kavaliers in 2005. After taking a year off, Frank returned to DCI as a member of Carolina Crown from 2007 through 2009. As an indoor performer, Frank performed with Rhythm X winning a WGI World Class Championship in 2009 and placing 4th in 2011. From 2005 to 2009, Frank was the Director of Percussion for Miami Senior High School, experiencing great success with the program, including 1st place at State Semi-Finals in 2005, as well as 2nd place finishes in 2006 and 2009.

Frank currently resides in Miami, and serves as the Percussion Arranger and Consultant for Miami Killian Senior High School.


John Lluvera, an educator, performer, and clinician, began his knowledge of percussion in St. Petersburg, Fl. During high school, John attended Boca Ciega High School and was the Percussion Section Leader all four years under the direction of Frank T. Williams III. 

In 2003, John performed with the Magic of Orlando Drum and Bugle Corps. Under the direction of Colin McNutt and Ian Moyer, John had the opportunity to be a part of both the front ensemble and drumline allowing him to expand his knowledge base in the marching arts and orchestral percussion idioms. He received the Aveids Zildjian Most Outstanding Cymbal Player of the Year award in 2003. The following Spring, John performed with the USF Indoor Percussion Theater as a member of the snare section.

John performed as a member of the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps after graduating from Boca Ciega High School in 2005. During his time with the Scouts, John was educated by Colin McNutt, Ian Moyer, and Lee Beddis. In 2006, John marched tenors at the Teal Sound Drum and Bugle Corps under the direction of Jeff Willis where he was appointed the tenor tech midway through the season. He ended his drum corps experience with Teal Sound in 2007 as the center snare and percussion section leader.
 
John is currently completing a percussion work book series (The Grid Book Series) and developing a new source for experiencing percussion media on the Internet (PercussionVids.com). He continues to be a percussion educator with J. W. Mitchell H.S. and Lakewood Ranch H.S., and is growing a private lessons studio via Skype.

Leading the World in 2014

The 2014 season is certainly going to showcase a new INFINITY. Joining Noah Bellamy and Arthur Goodman, and leading the program design for the World ensemble will be Andrew Ebert, a successful designer with a lot of experience both indoors and out. Read below for more information about this exciting new member of the Infini-Team.


Andrew Ebert is a full time designer and clinician for the marching arts based out of Greenville, SC where he lives with his wife. He has a degree in Secondary Education from Western Michigan University.

Andrew, originally a resident of Michigan, got his start in WGI Percussion as the director and visual designer for the Plymouth-Canton Indoor Percussion in 2007. In the group’s first year competing in WGI, they enjoyed a 6th place finish in PSW at WGI Finals. The following year Andy was one of the co-founders of Redline Percussion from Canton, MI. In Redline’s four years of existence, the group experienced four WGI Finals appearances and two top five placements. Andrew has worked with numerous groups throughout WGI that include finalists in A, Open, and World Class.

Andrew is also very active in DCI. After aging-out in 2004 with The Blue Devils, he became a staff member at Carolina Crown. He was moved in to the role of Visual Caption Head at the age of 24 for the 2007 season, a position that he held for five years. During this time, Crown went from 8th place at DCI Finals to 2nd place in just three years, and has continued as a fan favorite in the activity. Andrew is currently the drill designer and caption supervisor for The Madison Scouts, and the drill designer for The Troopers.

Andrew works as a drill designer for the fall marching band activity as well. He has been privileged to work with programs that have achieved great levels of success including state championships, regional championships, and BOA Grand National Finalists.

James Joins the Infini-Family

A new generation of INFINITY is beginning in 2014, beginning with the addition of James Sparling as the Battery Arranger & Caption Head! We are very excited to have James join the team. Read below for some background information about our latest member of the Infini-Fam.


James Sparling received his degree in Music Education with a minor in Architecture at Miami University. He has been heavily involved in the world music ensemble, Global Rhythms, where he served as Percussion Coordinator and Arranger (2004-2006). This ensemble has led him to perform across the globe and work with Grammy winners Glen Velez and Jamal Mohammed, Ghatam Khartick's “heARTbeat”, Musafir, Jeff Queen, Michael Burritt, Anthony Cirone, Indian film composer A.R. Rahman, Nelly Furtado, and Lenny Kravitz. He continues to perform with this group annually.

James has taught privately for several years, served as a Percussion Mentor at Tower Heights Middle School (2007), Director of Percussion at Bellbrook HS/MS (2007-2008), Assistant Band Director at Baker MS/Fairborn HS (2010-2011), Director of Percussion at Kettering Fairmont HS (2009-2013), and currently as Director of Percussion at Seminole HS (2013-Present).

His involvement with other notable groups includes:  Bob Jones HS (AL), Carroll HS, Centerville HS, Harrison HS (GA), Kings HS, LaSalle HS, Miamisburg HS, Milford HS, North Harrison HS (IN), Northmont HS, Penn-Trafford HS (PA), Plymouth-Canton HS (MI), Springboro HS, The Stampede Band (AB, Canada), Sycamore HS, Turpin HS, and The University of Cincinnati alongside Nick Angelis.

He marched tenors with Trinity Indoor Percussion Ensemble (2000), Music City Mystique (2001, WGI World Champions), Santa Clara Vanguard Drum and Bugle Corps (2001), Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps (2002), and Rhythm X (2003-2004).  In 2002, James was a part of the Colin McNutt marching clinic and the MU Balinese Gamelan clinic at PASIC (2003).

James has served as a member of the percussion staff for the Glassmen (2003), the Madison Scouts (2004-2006), the Carolina Crown (2007-2008), the Cadets (2009-2011). As a visual designer, he currently works with Spirit of America (2006-present), Madison Independent (2011), Eastside Fury (2011-present).

His most recent work as a member of the percussion staff is with Rhythm X (2005-2013), and this past summer as the Caption Head and Arranger of the Madison Scouts (2012-Present). 

James is proudly endorsed by Vic Firth Drumsticks and Mallets, Sabian Cymbals,
Evans Drumheads, and Pearl Drums/Adams.