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Drums & Lingerie: Rutgers Band Meets Victoria’s Secret


Some might consider it must-see TV: Rutgers Marching Band members in full uniform and Victoria’s Secret models in, well, something less than full uniform.

Fifteen of the band’s drumline members, dressed as Buckingham Palace Guards, delivered a rousing opening for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show on CBS-TV Tuesday night. And if you didn’t catch it then, you can still see it all online.

What’s it like for members of a university marching band to be the opening act for a bevvy of lingerie models? Not to mention special guests including Taylor Swift.

“Mind-blowing,” said Paul Nalesnik, a drumline member and music arranger. “We were treated as talent, not as a class or a marching band at a football game,” he said. “We got to hang out with everybody–Fall Out Boy, Taylor Swift, Lenny Kravitz [to name a few.]”

The band’s director, Tim Smith summed it up as a “Will-you-pinch-me-please moment” but one in keeping with the band members’ education as performers. “The reason I took this for our students was to expose them to a high-level production,” he said. “It’s great exposure for them– they’re getting out in front of New York City’s A-list for those two shows.”

Snare drummer Carlos Vazquez of Newark, admitted to being “a little nervous” about meeting scantily-clad Victoria’s Secret Angels, stars of the lingerie retailer’s fashion line.

Nalesik, who comes from Bound Brook, agreed. “It was a little daunting at first but they were very friendly,” he said.

Field manager Christian Credle says:

“They even wished us luck,” said Christian Credle of Dunellen, the band’s field manager.

Also performing in the show, which was recorded in November, were band members Josiah Arp of Bronson, Fl; Geoff Clark of Poway, Ca.; Jeremy Giles of Woodbridge; Kelvin Gomez of Perth Amboy; Kristin Lawton of Hillsborough; Patrick McCale of Oxford; Christopher Mottes of Branchburg; Dominick Orlando of Manalapan; Michael Mariano of Keansburg; Mark Managhan of Upper Deerfield; Galen Norwood of Sicklerville and Christian Negri of Brick.

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