Conductors

Charles H. Neidhardt, Conductor

Mr. Neidhardt is a graduate of Duquesne University and received his Master’s Degree from Penn State University. He is the former band director at Arcola Intermediate School and served as Music Department chairperson for the Methacton School District. Throughout the years, his bands at both Lower Merion and Methacton have performed and received awards at state conferences, local events, festivals and competitions. Mr. Neidhardt previously taught music in the Souderton and Lower Merion School Districts before retiring in July 2005 from Methacton.

Mr. Neidhardt is immediate Past President of PMEA having formerly served as President of District 11 PMEA. He has served as All State Chair, hosted the All State Band as well as All State auditions and served as Chair of the State Adjudication Festivals. He is a member of Phi Beta Mu Honorary Bandmaster Fraternity, a recipient of the “Citation of Excellence” award from the National Band Association, an Honorary Lifetime member of “Tri-M” the National Music Honor Society, and is listed in “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers”. Mr. Neidhardt performs as a member of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra, the Montgomery County Concert Band, where he is also the Director, the Tubafores Tuba Quartet, and does additional freelance work in the Philadelphia area. He maintains a large private studio and many of his private students have been members of the District, Region, All State and All East Bands and Orchestras.

Bret Mascaro, Assistant Conductor

Bret MascaroBret Mascaro has been a music educator and band director at Methacton HS, Souderton HS, Lionville MS, and North Penn Jr. High. During his tenure at Methacton, Bret served as a Music Department Coordinator, as well as the director of the Concert Band, Marching Band, and Jazz Band and teacher of Music Theory and Composition. He has been involved with the PA Music Educators Association as a conference clinician, district president, and festival coordinator. Bret has been an adjudicator of marching bands and drum and bugle corps throughout the US, Canada, and Japan. Bret is also an assistant director for American Music Abroad, a musical performance tour of Europe for high school students across the region.  Bret plans to retire in June 2015 after nearly 35 years of service.

 

Ryan Pongras, Assistant Conductor

Ryan PongrasRyan Pongras is a 2001 graduate of West Chester University with a BS in Music Education. He holds a Masters of Education from Cabrini College and has completed post graduate work in music education with The University of the Arts. From 2003 to present, he has taught 4th and 5th grade instrumental music in the Souderton Area School District. His arrangements and original compositions have been performed by area local young bands in addition to the PMEA District 11 Elementary Honors Band and Orchestra. Ryan joined the Montgomery County Concert Band in 2005 as a trumpet player. He was named co-assistant director in the fall of 2014. Away from playing and conducting, Ryan lives in Telford with his wife Kristine, daughter Brynn, and son Cole.