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Music to My Ears: Meet the Band of Blue’s Student Teachers!

The Zachary High Band of Blue welcomes student teachers every year to learn from the band students, practice teaching, and assist in directing and managing an ensemble. This spring semester, the B.O.B. welcomes two student teachers from two famous Louisiana universities, Larenz Stewart and Peyton Johnson.
Stewart pays attention to the Southern football game, as he stands with the Human Jukebox.

Larenz Stewart is currently a student at Southern University, majoring in Music Education. Stewart graduated from Harker Heights High School in Harker Heights, Texas. Ever since junior year of high school, Stewart knew he wanted to pursue music education. He attributes this decision to his high school band directors who taught him to love music, and their wisdom is something he wanted to pass on to future generations. 

“I chose to pursue this career because of how much my high school directors impacted and shaped my love for music. I was so inspired by their service to me, I wanted to pass it on to others as well,” Stewart said.

Once he graduated from high school, Stewart found himself at Southern University. Southern University is in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and is notorious for the talented and soulful band, “The Human Jukebox”. Being a part of the Human Jukebox has taught Stewart so much about music. With that knowledge he hopes to teach the Band of Blue that being a musician is more than just playing dull music on a page. He wants the members of this program to love what they do and take pride in their talents. 

“My only goal to improve ZHS Band is getting the students to love the music that they are playing. To make music by expressing their musicality and not just reading notes on a paper,” Stewart said.

Stewart is a percussionist in Human Jukebox, and he’s been playing since high school. Working with the ZHS Drumline has been an opportunity for the students and him. As he is still learning as a student, he can learn from the students he works with. In turn, the students can learn and improve their skills from Mr. Stewart as well. His favorite section to work with is the percussion section of course!

“I  love all sections equally, but fellow percussionists have a special place in his heart,” Stewart said. 

Overall, the students are what really make Stewart’s student teaching experience. 

“My favorite part of working with the ZHS Band is the students without a doubt. [They] never fail to put a smile on my face with all the craziness that [they] get into,” Stewart said. 



Johnson poses with Tiger Band mate at a LSU Football game.

Majoring in Music Education, Peyton Johnson is a student at Louisiana State University. Johnson graduated from St. Amant High School, a school with one of the best band programs in the state. Unlike Stewart, Johnson wasn’t sure what he wanted to do as his job in the future. As a self-proclaimed “sci-fi nerd”, Johnson thought he wanted to take the science and engineering route for his career. It wasn’t until his junior year of high school that he thought becoming a music educator would suit him.  

“So, I’m a big sci-fi nerd, which is why I wanted to do aerospace and work with spaceships and airplanes and just engineering in general,” Johnson said. “Since I decided I didn’t want to sit at a desk job all day, I started seriously thinking about music. I was always doing music, so I decided to focus on that and leave engineering and science as a hobby.”

Determined to pursue Music Education, Johnson enrolled in LSU, Louisiana State University, and he continues to study there currently. Johnson is a member of “The Golden Band from Tigerland”, a very talented band, especially in Louisiana. From what he’s learned at LSU, his only goal in working with the ZHS band is to better his teaching abilities. One of the main reasons he wanted to work with ZHS specifically is because we have such a good band program in general. 

“I just want to learn from this band and this program, and [learn about] how Mr. V and Mr. A created such a success. That way, I can apply that knowledge to other bands and groups in the future,” Johnson said.

Johnson has played trombone since beginning band and has continued to play trombone in the LSU band. Although he’s has spent a lot of time working with the Band of Blue ensemble, Johnson has also enjoyed working with the low brass, specifically the trombone section. Since he grew up playing trombone, Johnson feels he can assist the low brass section the best. Despite this, Johnson is working on his ability to assist other sections to be well-rounded in his musical knowledge. 

“I may be a bit biased, but working with trombones and the low brass section is truly my level of expertise. I am aiming to be able to work with all the other sections on the same level as I can with the low brass,” Johnson said. “I love all my students though, they never fail to put a smile on my face and make me laugh.”



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About the Contributor
Kara Griffith
Kara Griffith, Online Staff Writer
Kara Griffith (10) is a Staff Writer for the The Hoofprint Online news. She is a flautist in the Band of Blue Marching Band and Wind Symphony. She is in Talented Art and Beta Club. She loves to paint, draw, watch anime, and cuddle with her black cat, Mabel.
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