At First, He Wanted To Be An Engineer… Now, He’s A Role Model

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Suzy Lalancette, staff writer

During his high school years, Mr. Michael Niedziejko wanted to be an engineer.   In school, his favorite subject was math. “Except for geometry. I hated geometry.”

After first playing trombone in band for 8 days, then switching to saxophone for the rest of his school years, Mr. N started to think about what his future might entail. 

In college at West Chester University, he studied to be an engineer. Then he suddenly switched his major. 

“Music was always a part of my life. I just wondered what would happen if I chose what I was good at and ran with it,” he explains.

In the spring of his senior year, Mr. N changed his major to musicianship. 

“Best decision I made,” he says. When the job opportunities came in, there was an offer for a job, but “it was so far away that I didn’t want to take it.”

Being a college student, they were told to pick whatever job came to them, because they needed the experience. 

“I took a huge risk and turned the job down. But that day was the day that I received the offer for this job,” Mr N says, recounting his memories of the past. 

Lucky for us, he all of those decisions led him to become Conductor of the New Providence High School Concert Band and Director of the New Providence Marching Band. The numerous competitions that his bands have won goes to show how amazing of a band director he really is. 

“He’s a great conductor,” says Freshman Kanya Srithong.

Through his first and only job, he’s inspired countless people in the high school. 

“I just do what I think is right. To see you kids following my example really makes me proud,” he says, referencing all of the students in both Concert and Marching Band. 

It’s clear to see that the effort put in to these bands is amazing, and nobody works harder than the conductor. 

“The types of music I choose for my bands rely heavily on the emotions I feel when I hear them,” Mr. N responds when asked about what inspires his music choices. “I feel like Marching Band shows rely very heavily on props. I want the audience to feel the music as it’s being played and not worry about physical appearance as much.”

According to the band director, there are only two types of music. Pirate songs, with a more upbeat tempo, full of action, and love songs, which are slow and lyrical. 

“I like to choose a mixture of both of those types of music, with interesting musical concepts. Of course, the music has to have some educational value too, that’s why I’m employed here.”

For Marching and Concert Band, Mr. N has inspired so many musical careers. People have gone to Regionals and State Bands because of their hard work and dedication. And it’s all thanks to the Band Superstar, Mr. N.