Indoor Percussion Ensemble  Staff Bios

Indoor Percussion Ensemble Staff Bios

John McFarland, Music Composer/Arranger, Percussion Director:

John McFarland

John Max McFarland received his degrees in Composition (B.M.) and Percussion Performance (B.M., M.M.) from Western Michigan University where he studied percussion under Judy Moonert. John has performed as the principal percussionist and Principal Timpanist for the University Concert and Symphonic Bands, as well as the University Symphony Orchestra.  John was also a marching member of the Kiwanis Kavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps as well as the Santa Clara Vanguard Drum & Bugle Corps. John studied composition under Curtis Curtis-Smith, Dr. Richard Adams, and Dr. Robert Ricci. His compositions and arrangements have received international recognition with performances in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Luxembourg.  Most recently, his piece, "5 Songs in the Age of Stupidity" for 2 percussion and mezzo-soprano, received 1st prize in the Ironworks percussion duo composition contest.  His percussion music is published through Tapspace Publications where he is also on staff as a music engraver. John is also the owner and head music designer of Six to Five Productions, a marching arts music publishing company that provides composing/arranging services for fall and winter programs throughout the year.  John has arranged percussion for many marching bands and winter percussion programs throughout the United States as well as for DCI and numerous WGI groups.  John is currently the assistant director of bands and director of percussion for Notre Dame College in South Euclid, Ohio. On top of those duties he is also the composer and arranger for the marching band and winter percussion programs at Notre Dame College. John resides in Parma Heights, a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio with his wife Sydney, his son Camden, his 2 cats (Zoe and Minkah), his 4 greyhounds (Jason, Jasper, Lola, and Walker), and Italian Greyhound (Sophia).

Tim Fairbanks, Visual Designer:

Tim Fairbanks

Tim Fairbanks has taught at Centerville HS (OH) since 1997, serving as the Marching Percussion Director until 2011 and is currently the Drill Designer for the marching band and indoor drumline, where his groups are consistent National Finalists at BOA Grand National Championships and Scholastic World Finalists at the WGI World Championships. Centerville is the 1999 Scholastic Open Champion and 2004 WGI Scholastic World Champion. Tim is the Director and Visual Designer for Rhythm X, WGI Percussion Independent World Class Champion in 2008, 2009, 2013 and is currently the Drill Designer for the Blue Stars Drum and Bugle Corps from Lacrosse, WI. He proudly endorses the products of Pearl/Adams, Evans/D’addario, Sabian Inc., and is a Signature Artist with Innovative Percussion. Tim is the Vice President-Percussion for WGI Sport of the Arts, serving on the WGI Board of Director’s Executive Committee, in addition to membership on the WGI Percussion Advisory Board and Steering Committee. Tim is an internationally in-demand clinician, designer, arranger and adjudicator.


Jordan Bewley, Visual Director, Prop Designer:

Jordon Bewley

JB, as he prefers to be called, brings energy and innovation to NDIPE as our Visual Director and Prop Designer. His percussion performance background spans over 12 years with multiple ensembles. He graduated from Brunswick High School in 2008 where he played Snare and Tenors in the marching band and participated in Pep-Band and Percussion Ensemble. In 2007 and 2008 he marched cymbals for Matrix, but he spent his last eligible season teaching and playing cymbals for NDIPE in 2013. Since NDIPE’s beginning he is the programs’ first age out. Currently, Jordan is the Percussion Director at Avon Lake High School and a member of the Cleveland Browns Drumline. He works at Imperial Tool and Die Manufacturing Co. as a Machinist while pursuing degrees in Science Technology and Business Management at Cuyahoga Community College. After graduation he dreams of starting a business building custom drum sets. Jordan's understanding of the indoor activity, and his technical skill set create a great opportunity for our show design. He makes our design dreams a reality when building our “larger than life” props for the show. JB says, "This year is going to be special, and I am excited to show the world what we can do in Open Class!"

Jonathan Radwan, Snare Technician:Jonathon Radwan, Snare Tech

Jonathan has been a percussionist for over 23 years.  He attended Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio where he participated in ensembles such as the Marching Band, Pep Band, Jazz Band, Wind Ensemble, and Pit Orchestra.  Jonathan was also a 6 year member of the All-Ohio State Fair Band performing approximately 40 times each summer with the band throughout the duration of the Ohio State Fair.  Jonathan then attended the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio majoring in Computer Information Systems.  He continued his love of music by participating in the Pride of Dayton Marching Band, Flyer Pep Band, Dayton Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Combo, Indoor Drumline, and Symphonic Wind Ensemble.  While attending UD, Jonathan marched 2 summers of DCI with the Capital Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps out of Columbus, Ohio on the snare line.  He currently works for Hyland Software, Inc. in Westlake, Ohio as a Database Engineer.  This is Jonathan's 4th year at Notre Dame College with the marching band and NDIPE.

Brad Samsen, Snare Technician:Brad Samsen

Brad is from the Toledo area and has been an active percussion instructor at various high school drum lines throughout Northwest Ohio since 2010.  Brad marched DCI with Dutch Boy Drum and Bugle Corps from 2008-2009 and at Legends Drum and Bugle Corps from 2011-2012. He also marched WGI at Legends Independent Open in 2012 and Northcoast Academy from 2013-2014. Brad is currently finishing his Music Education degree at Bowling Green State University.  This is Brad’s first year with Notre Dame Indoor Percussion Ensemble and he is very excited to teach the snare line for the 2015 season.


Josh Schneider, Tenor Technician:Josh Schneider

Josh Schneider is a student, performer, and educator in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He is currently studying percussion at Indiana-Purdue University, Fort Wayne (IPFW). While at IPFW, Josh has studied with Jason Markzon and Eric Schweikert.
Josh's marching percussion career began at Easley High School in Easley, South Carolina. He moved to Fort Wayne his junior year and finished at Carroll High School. Josh marched with Legends Drum and Bugle Corps in 2010 and 2012. He also marched with NorthCoast Academy in 2013 and 2014.
  Josh has worked with numerous high school band and winter percussion ensembles throughout Northern Indiana, including: Angola High School, Garrett High School, Bishop Dwenger High School, and Elkhart Memorial High School. Josh is currently working with Carroll High School and Norwell High School, both of Fort Wayne, where he serves as tenor technician and front ensemble technician, respectively.
Josh is excited to work with NDIPE this year and looks forward to a successful season.  

Sean Durner, Bass Drum Technician:Sean Durner

Sean Durner graduated from Olentangy Liberty High School in Powell, Ohio.  Sean performed with Olentangy Liberty in both outdoor (on clarinet) and indoor (on auxiliary percussion, cymbals, and bass 1) programs for all four years of high school under the instruction of Craig Dunn, Tim Jackson, and Jeremy Jorgenson.
After a couple of years, he joined the White Sabers Drum and Bugle Corps in the Drum Corps Associates (DCA) circuit.  Sean has marched bass 3 for one season (2011) and bass 2 for three seasons (2012-2014) with White Sabers, including the corps’ most recent back-to-back DCA Class A World Champion seasons.  Sean marched with Eastside Fury for two seasons on bass 4, aging out with the 2013 season.
Sean is currently the bass tech for Olentangy Liberty’s marching band and indoor percussion ensemble.  He has taught the outdoor line for two seasons and the indoor ensemble for three.  He also taught Ferndale Indoor Percussion for the 2014 season, who placed 2nd in PIA at MCGC State Championships for the group’s inaugural season.  Sean joined the Notre Dame Indoor Percussion Ensemble staff for the 2014 season as a bass tech alongside Mike Lanning, and is very excited to push the group’s success to even higher heights.
Sean is a 2012 graduate of The Ohio State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Actuarial Science; he currently works at Nationwide Insurance in downtown Columbus, Ohio.

Michael Lanning, Bass Drum Technician:

Michael Lanning

Mike Lanning has been actively involved in the marching percussion activity since 1998. He attended Buena High School in Ventura, California, where he was a member of the Concert Band, Choir, Marching Band, and Indoor Drumline. From 2004 - 2007, Mike was a member of the Black Knights Drum Corps, an indoor drumline that competed in the Percussion Independent World class in the SCPA and WGIcircuits. He also spent the summer of 2006 with the MystikalDrum and Bugle Corps. Mike started teaching in 2007 and has worked with a number of ensembles including the Notre Dame College Marching Band, Notre Dame Indoor Percussion Ensemble, Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School, and Willoughby South High School. Mike has a deep passion for the marching activity, and finds great fulfillment from sharing his knowledge of the art with his students.

Cooper Mannon, Cymbal Technician:Cooper Mannon

Hailing from Toledo, OH, Cooper has been involved in the percussive arts for over 12 years. He was involved in the marching, pep, and concert band throughout his time at Lake High School in Millbury, Ohio, playing bass drum for three years and tenors for one year. His first experience as a cymbal player came in 2010, where he was a part of the Bowling Green State University Falcon Drumline. Joining NDIPE in 2013 as one of the founding members of the cymbal line, he developed a passion for the activity. He aged out in 2014 as cymbal section leader. Cooper is currently finishing up his degree in music production and live sound at Cuyahoga Community College in their Recording Arts Technology program. As his first year as an instructor, he is thrilled to begin helping decide and define the future of the Cymbals of Notre Dame College. He currently resides in Cleveland with his cat Boogers.

Andrew Novak, Visual Technician, Battery Technician:

Anderw Novak

Andrew Novak has been a percussionist for 8 years, starting with the drumline at West Geauga High School. Graduating in 2010 with experience on bass, snare, and tenors, he then attended Bowling Green State University for 2 years, where he was a member of the Falcon Marching Band Drumline, gaining additional experience on tenors and snare. From there, he was a member of Legends Percussion Indoor out of Kalamazoo, MI on snare drum and aged out of the drum corps activity in 2013 with the Legends Drum & Bugle Corps on tenors. Andrew also had the pleasure of being a member of pivotal years in NDIPE's history, marching tenors in 2013 and aging out of the WGI activity in 2014 as a section leader for the snareline. On top of this, he is a tenor player for the Browns Drumline. Teaching since he graduated, Andrew has been all over Ohio working for multiple high school programs such as West Geauga High School, Marion Harding High School, St Edward's High School, River View High School, Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School, and is the current battery instructor for Brunswick High School. He also worked in the summer of 2014 at Legends Drum & Bugle Corps as a tenor technician and is proud to be working with NDIPE this year as an upper battery technician as well as a member of the visual staff. Currently a student, Andrew is attending the Metro campus of Cuyahoga Community College in Recording Arts & Technologies.

Brian Budd, Battery Consultant:

Brain Bud

Brian Budd first became involved with competitive drumming through DCI in 1997. He went on to become one of the founding members of Matrix Indoor Marching Percussion Ensemble and ended his eligible playing days by aging out in the snare line with the Canton Bluecoats in 2002. Brian holds a percussion degree from Kent State University graduating in 2003. Later that same year he went on to play in “The Commandant’s Own” United States Marine Drum and Bugle Corps. Since then has moved back to the Cleveland Ohio area where he is currently playing snare drum and managing the Cleveland Browns Drumline. Brian has also made teaching a big part of his move back and has been working with numerous high school programs. This is Brian’s second year on staff with Notre Dame Indoor Percussion Ensemble.

Justine Lownsbury, Front Ensemble Instructor:

Justine LownsburyJustine Lownsbury has been actively involved in percussion for over 15 years, having the honor of spending the last 2 years teaching the front ensemble of Notre Dame College’s outdoor and indoor programs. She attended Brunswick High School, in Brunswick Ohio, where she was a member of the Marching Band, Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Jazz Ensemble, Pep Band, and Indoor Percussion Performance Ensemble. After high school, Justine attended Youngstown State University where she obtained her Bachelors degree for English Education with a minor in Music Education. Although her major focus was not specifically music, she was actively involved in numerous percussion ensembles, as well as the university band and the concert band, all while teaching high school marching band. Justine has been a part of the World Class Indoor Drumline Matrix, performing 3 seasons with them during her college years, having the opportunity to travel to Europe to perform. Graduating in 2012 with her Masters Degree in Healthcare Administration, she currently works at the Cleveland Veterans Medical Center as an administrator; and although her career is in health care, teaching percussion has always been a passion of hers, finding great fulfillment in the sharing of her experiences and knowledge with her students.