Alchemy Independent 2019

Alchemy Independent is pleased to announce its Unit Director and Visual Designer for the 2019 season. 

John Antonelli will serve as the Unit Director for the upcoming season. 

John Antonelli is a percussion educator, arranger, and adjudicator living in Raleigh, North Carolina. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in Percussion Performance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem. He has been an educator, writer, arranger, adjudicator, and performer throughout North Carolina, Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, and Illinois. He has performed at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention with the Philidor Percussion Group and has also performed with the Winston-Salem Symphony and the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Antonelli has been the Percussion Instructor at North Carolina State University since 2008 and has also served as the Director of Percussion at Athens Drive High School since 2007. 

Wes Pendergrass will join the Alchemy Independent staff as the Visual Designer for the upcoming season. 

Wesley Pendergrass has been involved in marching arts design for 13 years.  Shoeless Wes' WGI experience includes program design, consultation, and staging.  Pendergrass' expertise has garnered finalists in all WGI Classes in all Divisions and 14 WGI medals in SA, IA, SO, IO, PSA, PIA, PSO, PIO, WSA, and WSO. Of his 8 WGI Gold medals (spanning Guard, Winds, and Percussion), his most recent championship was in WSA (2018).

Alchemy Independent is proud to announce James Sparling will join the as the Program Coordinator for the upcoming season.

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.

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). He served on the percussion staff for the Glassmen (2003), the Madison Scouts (2004-2006), the Carolina Crown (2007-2008), the Cadets (2009-2011), and RhythmX (2005-2013). He has served as the visual designer for Madison Independent (2011), Eastside Fury (2011-2013), and currently works with Spirit of America (2006-present). He has most recently been serving as the Caption Head and Arranger of the Madison Scouts (2012-2014), Infinity Percussion (2013-present), and Redline Percussion (2014-present). 

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), Director of Percussion at Seminole HS (2013), and most recently as Director of Percussion at Plymouth-Canton Educational Park (2014-Present). His Concert Percussion Ensembles, Concert Soloists, and Concert Bands have annually earned highly regarded evaluations at the District and State Level.

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