Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Glynn Middle Students Tune Up for Newest Class; the Magnet Offering Bridges the Gap between Hobby and Possible Career

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Glynn Middle Students Tune Up for Newest Class; the Magnet Offering Bridges the Gap between Hobby and Possible Career

Article excerpt

Byline: MIKE MORRISON

Brunswick's own version of the popular Jack Black movie School of Rock opened with the new school year.

At the Glynn Middle School Academy of Performing and Visual Arts, veteran rock 'n' roller Marc Andress has been busy teaching the fine art of playing guitar - a little classical, a little blues, a lot of rock.

The kids are loving it.

"This is the beginning of my career!" seventh-grader Andrew Stormer said, half-jokingly, his voice barely audible above the Twelve Bar Blues erupting from 16 guitars.

His mother, Julie, teaches science at Glynn Middle. She wouldn't mind seeing her son follow in the footsteps of his cousin, Patrick Carne, who is a member of a moderately successful blues-rock band called the Black Keys.

But Andrew's not looking so far into the future.

"It's a hobby," he said. "I've been playing for a couple of years, and I enjoy it."

Julie Stormer praised the decision to add guitar to the school's fine arts curriculum. Glynn Middle is the school system's magnet school for the arts, but guitar is new this year.

"This is not something that's normally offered at school," she said. "It's something you have to do after school, and usually only once a week. It's great that he gets to do this every day."

Sue Johannsen's daughter, Jaclyn, an eighth-grader, has three years of private lessons on her resume. Jaclyn is interested in new-music, said her mother, also a Glynn Middle teacher.

"She's real passionate about playing the guitar," Sue Johannsen said. "It's great that she can bring her hobby into school. What I really like is that it's an opportunity to explore contemporary music."

Glynn Middle Principal Ricky Rentz recruited Andress on the recommendation of Gary Share, owner of City Music in downtown Brunswick. Andress has taught guitar at the store for several years.

"He's been a perfect fit," Rentz said. "He was already working on his degree, and he should be finished this year. …

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