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Small screen big break

BC grad makes surprise appearance on hit TV show ‘Glee’

Jacob Bartifeld playing bass at a family friend's wedding.

Jacob Bartifeld playing bass at a family friend's wedding.

— Bartfield started his music career playing the piano and cello in elementary school. He then began playing the bass at 12 years old and later learned a little guitar. The former Slingerlands resident eventually attended the Berklee College of Music as a performance major.

“I’ve always loved music and knew that’s what I wanted to do,” he said.

Bartfield was told to wear jeans and a plain shirt to shooting each day. Some days, wardrobe would change what the band was wearing to make them match or compliment each other. He also got his hair and makeup done each day.

Unfortunately, he didn’t get to meet any of the show’s stars like Lea Michele, Cory Monteith or Chris Colfer.

“When on set you have to keep quiet and stay there while they’re filming to pretend like you’re playing. You stand by in an extra room when not involved in the take,” he said.

Bartfield said at first he was really excited to be on set but after a while he became bored since filming the same scene at different angles can become monotonous.

He ended up appearing briefly in three scenes — in the opening number of “La Cucaracha,” during the cover of Gloria Estefan’s “Don’t Want to Lose You” and the “Bamboleo”/ “Hero” medley scene.

According to Bartfield, the greatest experience was connecting with local musicians. He and members of the Glee band exchanged numbers and he made other connections that will hopefully lead to more work in the future.

“A few hours ago I got a text and they were almost going to need me on Glee Project, but the regular bass player ended up being able to do it,” he said. “I feel pretty good about doing something like this again because they know who I am now.”

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