Peters
Township
School District
631 East McMurray Road
McMurray, PA 15317
Phone: 724-941-6251
Fax: 724-941-6565
View Peters Township School District
Peters Township Music Department
Welcome to the Peters Township Music Department, proudly building upon a tradition of musical excellence in the Peters Township community.  Peters Township Schools offer a musical curriculum that spans grades 1 through 12, with general music offered until grade 7 and instrumental and choral ensembles beginning in grade 4.  Peters students have offered musical performances, starting with first graders performing in their building, and then moving on to performing in a variety of venues including locally at the Peters library, Heinz Hall, and PNC Park, and further afield with recent trips to Florida and New York City for high school performing ensembles.  
District wide calendar of music events
Music Faculty
Our music department is strengthened by the diversity of faculty that nurtures our developing student musicians.  Peters Township music teachers practice what they preach.  Performance venues where PTSD faculty have performed include: Symphony Hall, Boston, MA; Carnegie Hall, NY, NY; The Kennedy Center, Washington DC; Carnegie Hall, Pittsburgh, PA; Heinz Hall, Pittsburgh, PA; Soldiers and Sailors Hall, Pittsburgh, PA; National Cathedral, Washington DC; Budokan, Tokyo, Japan; Severance Hall, Cleveland, OH; Jordan Hall, Boston, MA; US Capitol, Washington DC; Fanueil Hall, Boston, MA; The Benedum Center, Pittsburgh, PA;
  
 
Faculty biographies:
 
Mrs. Joann Bair teaches elementary band and general music class for young musicians at McMurray Elementary School. Born and raised in Allentown, PA also known as Band City, USA, Mrs. Bair started her collegiate work at Mansfield University of PA, graduating Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree with a concentration in instrumental music. She continued her education through graduate work in the Duquesne University School of music. Teaching has lead Mrs. Bair as far as Mesa and Tempe, Arizona, and locally she has taught at Our Lady of Lourdes School in Burgettstown. Mrs. Bair was the Burgettstown High School assistant marching band director for 9 years. She also held a position in the Keystone Oaks School District, as the middle school and high school band director and high school marching band director for one year immediately before taking her current position in Peters Township in the fall of 2000. She is a member of the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association and the Music Educators National Conference. She currently lives in Bethel Park, enjoying some quiet time with her husband now that their two children, Rhiannon and Trevin, are off to college.

Mr. Milt Barney is a native of Peters Township, and graduate of Peters Township High School. His musical career began as a 4th grade saxophonist at Pleasant Valley Elementary school, and continued through Peters Township middle and high school. After graduating from Duquesne University with a B.S. in Music Education he joined the United States Air Force Band program. His career spanned just over 20 years and included performances in over 20 states, Japan, Korea, and Guam, including performances for U.S. presidents, prime ministers, world leaders, and various celebrity artists. After retiring from the Air Force, he and his family moved to Bethel Park. Mr. Barney taught saxophone at Carnegie Mellon University and Washington & Jefferson College prior to being hired by the Peters Township School District in 2008. He currently performs with the Pittsburgh Symphony and Pops Orchestras, the Four Townsmen Show Band, the Jazz Conspiracy Big Band, the worship band at Peters Creek Baptist Church, and freelances with other groups in the greater Pittsburgh area. He is currently a graduate student at Duquesne University in the Music Technology/Digital Pedagogy department and anticipates graduating in the spring of 2015. Mr. Barney is the director of the concert band, wind symphony, and jazz band at Peters Township High school. Additionally he teaches AP Music Theory, online music theory, and Popular Music.
 
Mr. Ray Cygrymus has had the pleasure of being a music specialist in the Peters Township School District for the past 20 years, currently teaching 4th, 5th and 6th grade general music and 5th and 6th grade chorus. Ray has also been directing the musicals at Peters Township High School for the past 3 years. Before coming to Peters Township, Ray had taught music at St. Anne’s in Castle Shannon. A proud graduate of Duquesne University, Ray was a voice major specializing in Music Education. Along with music, Ray loves and is equally involved in Theater. He has performed in numerous professional and semi-professional theater productions as an actor, musician, musical director, acting coach and sound designer. Although performing in many plays and musicals, Ray has been blessed with performing the role of Jesus Christ, in Jesus Christ Superstar 12 times 9 of those professionally with Pittsburgh Musical Theater and the Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center. Ray has been a professional musician playing in various bands in the Pittsburgh area for over 35 years. He resides in South Park with his lovely wife Jeanie and his beautiful daughters Emily and Carly.

Mr. David M. DiFilippo has been professionally teaching music in the South Hills of Pittsburgh since 2002. He grew up in the Western Pennsylvania town of Spring Church where he graduated as valedictorian of Apollo-Ridge High School, class of 1997. He attended Carnegie Mellon University, studying both engineering and music for the first year. After choosing to focus solely on music, Mr. DiFilippo was able to continue studying trumpet with Anthony Pasquarelli and also study composition with Nancy Galbraith and conducting with Thomas Douglas. He graduated with University Honors from CMU in 2002, earning a BFA in Trumpet Performance, Minor in Conducting, and Music Education Certification. At CMU, DiFilippo was assistant conductor for the CMU Drama department productions of Stephen Schwartz’s “The Baker’s Wife” and Stephen Sondheim’s “Company.” During this time, he also worked as an arranger and copyist for the River City Brass Band. In 2001, Mr. DiFilippo was the musical director for Apollo-Ridge High School’s performance of the musical “Brave New World,” based on Aldous Huxley’s novel and featuring DiFilippo’s original musical score. He also performed keyboards, bass, and vocals for No Tune Left Behind, a nationally-recognized character-education rock band. He was the author, composer, and director of “Fall-O’ the Queen,” an original anti-bullying video musical produced with NTLB. Mr. DiFilippo has earned a professional certificate from Berklee Online for Electronic Music Production and Sound Design. Currently, Mr. DiFilippo lives in Bethel Park, PA where he maintains a digital recording studio, working with various local artists, and writing and recording original music. He has also recently finished authoring a digital, interactive music textbook, “Octave Park™ Elementary,” which is scheduled to be available on iBooks® in Spring 2015.
 

Mr. Lawrence A. Lucas has been teaching music for the Peters Township School District for twenty two years. Mr. Lucas has worked with students of all ages and his music ensembles have been honored with numerous awards including Superior and Excellent Ratings at local, national, and international music festivals and competitions. Mr. Lucas has been teaching music in the public school system since 1992 and instructing private brass students since 1988. Many of his private students have auditioned for and have been accepted into honors ensembles as well as prominent music schools. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Music Performance and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management as well as a Music Education Certification from Carnegie Mellon University in 1992. Mr. Lucas also earned the Master of Music Degree from Duquesne University in 1998 and he performs as a free lance musician in the Greater Pittsburgh Area.
 

Mr. Stephen McGough is a professional musician and teacher with a wide range of experience in both fields. He received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in trumpet performance as well as his Pennsylvania teaching certification from Carnegie Mellon University where he studied with renowned trumpet instructor Anthony L. Pasquarelli. As a performer, he has toured the country seeing 32 of the 50 states with the River City Brass, and performs regularly throughout the Pittsburgh region with the Wheeling and Westmoreland Symphonies, the Allegheny City Ragtime Orchestra, the Academy Chamber Orchestra and the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh. Stephen has been a music educator in the Peters Township School District for 13 years, and served as the Music Director at North Catholic High School for 1 year before coming to Peters. Prior to its disbanding, Stephen was a drummer and vocalist with the anti-bullying, character education focused rock band No Tune Left Behind with 3 fellow teacher musicians from McMurray Elementary. NTLB had received national recognition and acclaim, performing twice at the Character Education Partnership’s national conference in Washington D.C. Stephen is happily married to Julie McGough, another fine musician, and is father to three lovely daughters.


Mr. Ryan Perrotte, a graduate of Duquesne University with a B.S. in Music Education, has been the choral director at Peters Township HS for the past 16 years. While at Duquesne U., he performed with the Duquesne University Chamber Singers in two European competitions, where the group won first place in the Marktoberdorf International Choral Competition in 1997. In addition to many choirs, Mr. Perrotte has sung with several barbershop quartets, one of which placed 3rd in the National Collegiate Barbershop Competition in 1997 and has coached many high school quartets. Mr. Perrotte, along with six other talented musicians and writers from Act One Theater School, has composed full length musicals and is currently working on his third. His strong love of composing has helped him in producing many songs including “Hockey Night in Pittsburgh” that has been featured on websites, TV, and radio stations such as Kiss FM, Tosh.0, KDKA, and Star 100.7 FM. Mr. Perrotte also made his Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera Debut in the summer of 2004 in the Music Man starring Jeff Goldblum and most recently shared the stage at Heinz Hall in Pittsburgh and the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC with Shirley Jones, Patrick Cassidy, and Marvin Hamlisch reprising his role. He is one of the founders and current President of In Tune With the Arts Studios, Inc., a teaching and full service recording studio located in Gibsonia, PA.

Mr. Robert Tupper has been teaching in Peters Township since 2001. Formal training occurred at Carnegie Mellon University, where he received a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in trombone performance as well as Pennsylvania teacher certification. As a music educator, Mr. Tupper has lead students in numerous performances at Pleasant Valley, McMurray and Bower Hill Elementary schools. In addition to educational responsibilities, Mr. Tupper continues to work as a professional musician. Area groups that he has performed with include the Pittsburgh Opera, the River City Brass Band, as well as the orchestras of Westmoreland, Wheeling, and McKeesport. When not teaching or playing the trombone, Mr. Tupper enjoys spending time with his wife and 2 children.
Peters
Township
School District
Peters Township School District
631 East McMurray Road
McMurray, PA 15317
Phone: 724-941-6251
Fax: 724-941-6565
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