Monday, January 22, 2018
Education

Jesuit's high school marching band ready for halftime performance

TAMPA

When Peter Macaluso attended Jesuit High School, he always wished they had a marching band.

"All my friends at other schools marched, and the friends I made at music camps over the summer marched," said Macaluso, who graduated from Jesuit in 2007.

Five years later, Macaluso will get his wish, when the Jesuit marching band takes the field Saturday for the school's home football game against rival Plant.

As director of the school's athletic band, Macaluso led the effort to bring back the marching band, which had been a fixture at the school from the late 1960s to about 2000.

Last year, Macaluso's group entertained fans at Jesuit home football games from the stands.

But over the summer, he sent notices to Jesuit band members offering a marching camp in August. And about 22 students took him up on it.

With only a few rehearsals since then, students have taken on the new challenge of marching with excitement.

"It feels more like a real band now instead of just playing in the stands," said Joe Ottolino, a senior who plays the trombone.

"I think the attitude is really different now from last year," Macaluso said. "We're asking more and they're delivering more, and they like it."

Macaluso played the saxophone for the marching band at Georgia Tech, where he studied engineering and graduated in 2011. He also plays flute for the community ensemble Fanfare Concert Winds at Hillsborough Community College.

He joined the Jesuit faculty last year as the assistant to music director Nina Wegmann, who was his music teacher when he was a Jesuit student.

He has arranged the music and choreography for the new marching component himself, which "aren't expert because I've never done this before," he admits. But he has high hopes to grow the band, which is already up to 33 students from the start of the year, an increase from last year's athletic band.

That number includes three girls from the Academy of Holy Names, the all-girls school that has a partnership with Jesuit.

"I think everybody should have a chance to do marching band, even if your school doesn't have one," Macaluso said.

Jesuit junior Ryan Lerch, a saxophone player, is looking forward to showing off the band's moves at the season opener.

"I love playing at the football games," said Lerch. "We have a drum line, it'll look pretty neat. … It's loud and exciting and the fans usually get up and dance. It's just a good time."

The band will perform at halftime of Saturday's 8 p.m. game at Jesuit.

Comments
USF leaders move to calm fears over consolidation plan

USF leaders move to calm fears over consolidation plan

ST. PETERSBURG — Holding a piece of computer paper and a microphone, the leader of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg began a Friday afternoon forum by repeating the USF administration’s new mantra.He reassured the crowd before him that t...
Published: 01/19/18

Crews Lake thespians overcome the odds

SPRING HILL — It’s 8:30 a.m. — "homeroom" period in school speak — when kids in the Crews Lake Middle School drama club file into an empty chorus room to begin rehearsing under the direction of language arts teacher Kristen Sykora. There’s only 25 m...
Published: 01/19/18
Cuts hit top school leaders as Hillsborough sheds three six-figure salaries

Cuts hit top school leaders as Hillsborough sheds three six-figure salaries

TAMPA — Hillsborough County school superintendent Jeff Eakins on Friday announced the first in a series of belt-tightening moves that include the elimination of three six-figure positions.Jobs now held by Wynne Tye and Larry Sykes will no longer exis...
Published: 01/19/18
Tampa Bay schools warn parents about flu activity, dangers

Tampa Bay schools warn parents about flu activity, dangers

The Florida Department of Health has reported a sharp increase in flu activity in the last several weeks, prompting area schools to send out letters warning parents about the virus. At least two districts, however, say that flu activity in their scho...
Published: 01/19/18

More than 400 apply to Pasco technical high school

School choice for 2018-19 is in full swing, and district officials said they’ve been pleased with the interest they’ve seen so far.The window for applying to the district’s magnet schools closed Jan. 12, except for applications for the new Wendell Kr...
Published: 01/18/18
Read the report on the fatal FSU frat party: ‘The most intoxicated’ they had ever been

Read the report on the fatal FSU frat party: ‘The most intoxicated’ they had ever been

"On Nov. 3, 2017, the Tallahassee Police Department responded to 1012 Buena Vista Drive … in reference to a death investigation."So begins a charging document in the case of Andrew Coffey, the 20-year-old Florida State University student who was foun...
Published: 01/18/18
In St. Petersburg, skeptics sneer at plan to concentrate USF power in Tampa

In St. Petersburg, skeptics sneer at plan to concentrate USF power in Tampa

In the state capitol on Wednesday, lawmakers breezed through the bullet points of a higher education bill. They skimmed past a hot-button proposal to consolidate the University of South Florida System into a single university without a peep of pushba...
Published: 01/18/18
Lithia Springs Elementary gets kids up with standing desks

Lithia Springs Elementary gets kids up with standing desks

VALRICO — Fifth-grade math teacher Melissa Forsythe walked around her Lithia Springs Elementary School classroom on Tuesday with zeal.She stopped at each station and listened with a big smile on her face as her students told stories about their new s...
Published: 01/17/18
Updated: 01/21/18
Five things to know about teacher pay negotiations in Hillsborough

Five things to know about teacher pay negotiations in Hillsborough

TAMPA — They were hoping to receive between $15 million and $17 million in scheduled pay raises. But the Hillsborough County school district says it can’t afford to give its teachers anywhere near that much, while the teachers say they deserve nothin...
Published: 01/17/18
Updated: 01/18/18
Young Pasco teacher faces cancer with support of students

Young Pasco teacher faces cancer with support of students

NEW PORT RICHEY — At age 28, things were really shaping up for Joel Santos-Gonzalez. Fulfilling his lifelong dream of becoming a teacher, he had just completed his third year at Gulf Middle School."I always liked to talk to people on an intellectual ...
Published: 01/17/18
Updated: 01/18/18