Welcome to Perry Meridian Bands!

The Perry Meridian Band Department is comprised of over 200 students across numerous ensembles. Our goal as an organization is to give students the chance to showcase a variety of musical genres and have once-in-a-lifetime performance opportunities.

Michael Richardson, Director of Bands

Michael A. Richardson is the Director of Bands at Perry Meridian High School. He is responsible for directing the Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Percussion Ensemble, Pep Band, Marching Falcons, and overseeing all extra-curricular Band activities. Prior to joining the staff at Perry Meridian, Mr. Richardson was Director of Bands in Benton Community Schools (Fowler, IN) where he taught Band in Grades 6-12 for 9 years.

Mr. Richardson did his undergraduate work at the University of Indianapolis and earned his Bachelor of Music in Music Education. During his time there, he was a member of several performing groups including serving as Director of the University Pep Band. He also served as an officer for three years in the UIndy chapter of the National Association for Music Education. Mr. Richardson studied Horn under Mr. Darin Sorley and Instrumental Conducting with Dr. James Spinazzola. Mr. Richardson is a member of the National Association for Music Education, Indiana Music Educators Association, Indiana Bandmasters Association, and the Indiana Jazz Educators Association. He consistently serves as an ISSMA adjudicator for Solo & Ensemble and Organizational Festivals.

His wife Jaclyn is the Choral Director at Southport High School. They reside in Indianapolis with their daughters Melody & Catherine, and their son Benjamin.

Cameron Papandria, Assistant Band Director

Cameron Papandria serves as the Assistant Band Director for Perry Meridian High School.  Cameron is from the southside of Indianapolis, graduating from Roncalli High School.  He graduated from Miami University in Oxford, OH with a Bachelor of Music in Music Education, studying under Jeremy Long, Gary Speck, Stephen Lytle, and Brian Meyers.

Before joining the Perry Meridian team, Cameron was the Band and Chorus Director at Jac-Cen-Del Community Schools in Osgood, Indiana for 3 years.  He taught 5th-12th grade band and choral classes, Music Theory, and Applied Music courses.  During his tenure, he also established an after-school Jazz Ensemble and a summer marching band program that competed in Central Indiana Track Band Association competitions and Indiana State Fair Band Day.  

Mr. Papandria is also a member of the National Association for Music Education, Indiana Music Educators Association, Indiana Bandmasters Association, and the Indiana Jazz Educators Association. He is also a member of the Greater Greenwood Community Band saxophone section.

Cameron was a member of the Band Directors Marching Band that performed in the 2022 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California and will perform in the 2023 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with the same ensemble.  He was on staff for the Music For All Summer Symposium from 2018-2020.  He also conducted the Miami University Pep Band during the 2021-2022 school year. 

Hunter Wheatcraft, Percussion Director

Mr. Wheatcraft is a Greenwood Community HS graduate, and holds a Bachelor’s from Butler University and a Masters from the University of New Mexico, both in Percussion Performance. He has served as a Drumline & Front Ensemble tech at various High Schools, and is a current playing member of the Greenwood Community Band!

Although he is new to us as of 2023, Mr. Wheatcraft is not new to Perry Meridian. He has been working across the street with the Bands at PMMS since 2022, and now is extending his reach to our side of the street. He is excited to carry on the percussion program that we already have at PMHS, and to see what new heights he can help the program achieve.

Tim Patton, Color Guard Director

Tim is entering his 18th year teaching color guard, and his 12th year as a director. The 2023-2024 school year marks Tim’s 4th year at Perry Meridian, with previous teaching experience including Southwestern Jr/Sr High School, Paoli Jr/Sr High School, Henryville Jr/Sr High School, Madison Consolidated High School, Monrovia Jr/Sr High School, and Scottsburg High School. Tim has taken a guard to IHSCGA State Finals 8 times, and the ISSMA State Finals 4 times. Tim also has 7 medals from the Tri-State Marching Arts Circuit for his work with the guards from Madison and Scottsburg High Schools.

Outside of teaching color guard, Tim enjoys doing photography, crocheting, cooking/baking, and playing with his dachshund, Walter. Tim currently lives in Franklin, IN with his partner of 8 years, Jonny.

Tim is finishing a degree from Ivy Tech Community College in Visual Communications with an emphasis in Photography, as well as a professional certificate in Digital Marketing. He will graduate in May of 2024, at the age of 37. (It’s never too late!)

Philosophy Statement

We study music because it is a unique form of knowledge and communication. It gives the student a chance to explore an emotional means of communication and discover how to express his/her own feelings in a positive and appropriate manner.

Performance is the primary means of learning in the band program. Through performance, a student achieves musical independence through the development of technical ability, listening skills, ensemble skills, and theoretical knowledge.

Participation in the Concert Band is the primary vehicle for this musical development. Marching Band, Jazz Band, Pep Band, ensembles, and solos enrich the overall musical experience for the students. In such a program, students are exposed to a wide variety of the finest in musical literature, and therefore learn to appreciate the value of music.

Besides achieving true musicianship, students gain an understanding of their musical heritage and develop their creative abilities. Each activity in the band program contributes to a well-rounded musical education and helps students experience the joy and satisfaction of music making.

There are also many valuable by-products of music study through band participation. Students learn the skills of responsible group membership and participation. Participation in band encourages the development of a good work ethic. In addition, current research studies have found the study of music to have positive effects on mental performance and critical thinking skills.

The band program, which has the students as its central focus, promotes learning through the art of music making and the development of musical understanding, will most fully provide all the benefits such a program can offer. We seek to be this type of organization.

Perry Meridian Bands