On April 22, four Orange Teens claimed the title of best Middle School Band at the Ridgefield Playhouse 2018 Band Jam. Playing to a packed house, Christopher Carlson, Lucas Ketchian, Oliver Nappi and Declan O’Rourke in their band called “The 7’s,” rocked out in Connecticut’s biggest band competition. The annual battle of the bands which was started by three Ridgefield boys in order to save the struggling playhouse, has raised over $100,000 for the Playhouse since its inception in 2010. Each year local bands vie for bragging rights as BandJam champion. Bands are judged on musicianship, quality of sound, and showmanship. In this year’s battle, middle school rockers, the 7’s competed against 2 Minute Minors, Band2 and Sky Bandits. They were joined by high school bands, Abby & The Roadsters, Gilbert, Orbit and Sound Beacon. BandJam 2018 celebrity judges included Broadway’s Debbie Gravitte, Living Color bassist Doug Wimbish and i95fm’s Ethan Carey. The 7’s who love ‘80s and ‘90s rock performed Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes and Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana. The judges were blown away by the ‘7’s performance and got quite the compliment when Doug Wimbash said, “Well done! I look forward to seeing you guys at Madison Square Garden!” This was the first year The ‘7’s competed and had such a positive experience that they will definitely be doing it again next year. Who know what lies in the future for The 7’s but right now they are riding the high of being crowned the best middle school band in Connecticut!