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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

FAMU recruiting musicians, still no word on Marching 100 band's return

Two days after hiring an alum to usher in the return of its dormant marching band, Florida A&M University is launching a recruitment tour targeted at young musicians in South Florida.

The school is calling it the "Stop Hazing Tour," according to a post on WCTV's website. That is a nod toward the reason why the Marching 100 band is currently off the field: the November 2011 hazing death of drum major Robert Champion.

The band did not perform during the 2012 football season, and the Orlando Sentinel reported last year that many music students opted to apply at other schools, including rival Bethune-Cookman University.

Now, that Sylvester Young has been named the new band director, the school has all the pieces in place for the band's return this fall. The school has not said for sure it will happen, but the recruitment tour may be considered another important step.

The tour will make stops in Miami, Weston and West Palm Beach from May 18 through 21. Current FAMU music students will perform at each event, and prospective students can audition on the spot in hopes of earning music scholarships.

FAMU Interim President Larry Robinson refused to say Tuesday if Young's hiring is a clear indication the band will be back for the 2013 season. Certain policies and procedures still need to be finalized, he told reporters.

During the final round of interviews, Young told the search committee that if he were hired he would have the band ready by the first game on Sept. 1.

[Last modified: Thursday, May 9, 2013 5:26pm]


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