Timberlane’s New Music Director


Jacob Lambert

In 2006 Kurt Schweiss began his career as a teacher at an elementary school named Chester academy. Freshly graduated from UNH earlier that year it was his first time having a full time teaching job, as before that the most he had done was work as a substitute teacher for many schools, including Timberlane. Mr. Schweiss decided that he wanted to teach after an experience he had in his senior year of high school when he was asked by his band director if he was interested in directing his own clarinet choir. Schweiss accepted the offer and was then put in charge of teaching and getting a small group of students ready for a concert. After some time the choir was ready to play in the concert, but after the performance Schweiss was disappointed. He felt as if the students prepared more than they could have played better. Shortly after he received a card from the students he taught which apologized for the performance’s lack of polish but thanked him for teaching them. Schweiss said that when he read the card he realized that he “helped them understand a little bit about themselves and what they needed to be successful and the process they had to undergo, and it made me feel really good.” 


Schweiss worked at Chester academy for the next seven years and although he enjoyed it, the job had its flaws. Schweiss wanted to work in a more band oriented environment, as that’s where his passion was, but Chester’s art department was more focused on theatre than band. On top of that he was the only full time employee in the music department and being fresh out of college he still had questions about teaching music, but he had no one to turn to. Schweiss enjoyed his time spent at Chester, but eventually he decided that it was time to move on. In 2013 he saw that there was a job opening for the elementary school music director at Timberlane and decided to apply. Schweiss didn’t hear back from Timberlane, but eventually he was called back. He was informed that the position that he originally applied for was no longer available, but the position of middle school bad director had since opened up if he was interested. This was good news for Schweiss as he had been hoping to work with older kids. Mr. Schweiss was called in for an interview by a committee of Timberlane staff where he was asked about his teaching career and his qualifications. Out of everyone interviewed Schweiss and two other people were selected to run an 8th grade band rehearsal. After the school was impressed with his performance, Schweiss was hired as Timberlane’s band director.  


Mr. Schweiss has worked happily in his position as the middle school band director for eight years, but earlier this year there was a big change in the Timberlane music department that would ultimately lead to Mr. Schweiss’ new job as Timberlane’s interim music director. In early 2021 Anthony DiBartolomeo announced that he was retiring. Dibartolomeo had been working at Timberlane for over 30 years, and it was going to be a big job to fill. Originally the school board was unsure if they would fill his position, but upon seeing the reactions of some of the members of Timberlane’s community the school decided that the position would be filled internally. Seeing the email Schweiss decided to apply. He was selected to be interviewed by Sau staff, and a couple weeks after the interview Schweiss was contacted and informed that he would be filling the new position of interim music director. The new director position is a little different than the last, as unlike Mr. DiBartolomeo, Schweiss is still required to teach.  Schweiss says that he was surprised to find out how many meetings he had to attend. He also says that he enjoys the fact that his new position allows him to interact with more music programs within the district.  The new job has been quite a big change for Mr. Schweiss, but he has proven that he is more than capable of handling the task.