Band director makes debut at New Milford High David Syzdek makes the switch from Hamden
David Syzdek makes the switch from Hamden
There's a new New Milford High School band and music director teacher in town.
David Syzdek was hired for the New Milford school district position last week, filling a similar post to that which he had held in Hamden.
By Tuesday evening, he was introducing himself to his student musicians and, within the hour, leading band practice at the high school.
"I think this will be a good fit," Superintendent of Schools JeanAnn Paddyfote said Monday.. "When he did his master's degree work at UConn, he was the pep band leader for the university's basketball games. He came highly recommended."
Dr. Paddyfote said Mr. Syzdek, 30, was being "strongly considered" for the job at New Milford High School before a hiring snafu involving Port Chester, N.Y., music teacher Michael Miceli left the district in the lurch for a few days.
She emphasized this week Mr. Syzdek has not been hired as a second choice.
It had been incorrectly posted on the New Milford Band and Color Guard Parents Association's website the previous week that Mr. Miceli had been hired for the position.
He thought he had been, Mr. Miceli told The Spectrum, but Ellamae Baldelli, the school district's human resources director, informed The Spectrum Aug. 4 that had not been the case.
Dr. Paddyfote said Monday Mr. Syzdek was quickly stepping into his role in New Milford.
"Coming into this position late in the process, I want to do whatever I can to make things work for everyone," Mr. Syzdek said during an interview Tuesday. "The band has a schedule in place, and I'm doing my best to work with them."
Mary Mercer, the Parents Association secretary, met Mr. Syzdek Wednesday.
"I really liked him," she reported. "I think he's going to be a fantastic match for our band. The children were so excited to start Tuesday and they took to him immediately."
"He'd found an old New Milford High School band shirt in the office that he'd put on," she laughed. "He looked like he'd always been there."
Mr. Syzdek holds a bachelor of science degree in music and a master's degree in conducting from the University of Connecticut.
His duties at Hamden High School included teaching music technology and music theory and directing the marching band, jazz band and the stage pit orchestra.
A trombone player, Mr. Syzdek said at UConn he was a graduate assistant director for the university's bands. In the early spring, he traveled with the basketball team to tournament games.
He said he had been drawn to New Milford High School because "it is a very strong program. Things seem to be moving in the right direction with the program. It's moving in the direction I want to go with in my career."
Mr. Syzdek and his wife, Elizabeth, live in Cheshire and are the parents of sons aged 3 years and 18 months.