Bruce Herrmann, Director of Instrumental Music
A native of New Port Richey, Florida, Mr. Herrmann received his Bachelor of Arts in Music from The University of South Florida (USF), under the direction of Dr. William Weidrich, Mr. Ivan Wansley and Mr. Jay Hunsberger. During his time at USF, Mr. Herrmann held the position of Principal Euphonium in both the Wind Ensemble and the Symphonic Band. In 1999, Mr. Herrmann had the privilege and honor of being named one of the Inaugural Drum Majors for the University of South Florida’s Herd of Thunder (HOT) Marching Band.
Mr. Herrmann has been a music educator in the Hillsborough County public school system since 2003 and served as the Director of Band and Orchestra at Chamberlain High School from 2005-2012. Under Mr. Herrmann’s direction, the marching band, orchestra and concert ensembles have received numerous years of superior ratings and various accolades at festivals such as the Smoky Mountain Music Festival, the Dixie Classic Music Festival and the Fiesta-val Music Festival. In 2009, the Chamberlain band was privileged to share the stage and perform with the internationally known group, The Dallas Brass.
From 2012-2014, Mr. Herrmann returned to The University of South Florida (USF) and earned a Masters Degree in Instrumental Conducting under the tutelage of Dr. John Carmichael, Dr. Matthew McCutchen, and Dr. William Wiedrich. During this time Mr. Herrmann served as a teaching assistant with the Herd of Thunder as well as a conductor of the “Rumble” Pep Band. Additionally he served as a guest conductor with the USF Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble and Concert Band. Mr. Herrmann also served as the Executive Director for such events as USF’s annual HOT Day and Festival of Winds.
Mr. Herrmann is a member of the National Association for Music Educators, the National Band Association, the Florida Bandmasters Association, the Florida Orchestra Association, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia and is an Honorary member of Kappa Kappa Psi and Sigma Alpha Iota.
Mr. Herrmann was appointed Director of Instrumental Music at Durant High School in June, 2014. He and his wife, Jamie, currently reside in Brandon, Florida.
Daniel Rodriguez, Director of Orchestra & Guitar
Daniel Rodriguez received his Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from the University of South Florida (USF), under the direction of Mr. Robert McCormick, Dr. Matthew McCutchen, Dr. John Carmichael, and Dr. William Wiedrich. During his time at USF, Mr.Rodriguez was a member of the USF Herd of Thunder Marching Band, the USF Percussion Ensemble, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, and Symphony Orchestra. He was also a member of the Bay Area Percussion Ensemble, 2013 WGI Percussion Independent A Class finalists. During his time in the USF Percussion studio, he was featured in several recordings with the McCormick Percussion Group, including the album Plot: Music for Unspecified Instruments. In the summer of 2016, Mr. Rodriguez was invited along with four other percussionists to perform with the Hot Springs Symphony Orchestra in Hot Springs, Arkansas. He has served as a percussion instructor and guest clinician at several high schools in the Tampa Bay area.
Mr. Rodriguez was appointed the Director of Orchestra and Guitar in May, 2017. He currently resides in Tampa, Florida.
Chelsea Tortora, Visual/Music
Chelsea Tortora is a recent graduate from the University of South Florida with her Bachelors in Music Education. While attending the University, she was a member of the Herd of Thunder Marching Band, the Rumble Pep Band as well many other ensembles. As a member of the Wind Ensemble in the School of Music, she traveled to New York City to perform on stage at Carnegie Hall along with the other 55 members of the USF Wind Ensemble. Over the past 5 years, Chelsea has had the opportunity to work with marching bands across the state of Florida. Chelsea is currently the Music and Performing Arts director at Terrace Community Middle School in Temple Terrace.
Eddie Mora, Visual/Music
Bio to come!
Zachary Elnahwy, Visual/Music
Bio to come!
Marty McHale, Percussion
Bio to come!
Andy Snow, Color Guard Director
Andy is a native Floridian, born and raised in Valrico, Florida outside of Tampa. He attended Durant High School in Plant City, FL where he is now on staff. Having cultivated a love for the marching arts, Andy toured with the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corp from Rosemont, Illinois where he earned a World Championship in 2002. Andy has also performed with such groups as the USF Winter Guard, Northeast Independent Winter Guard, and has also worked as a performer at Disney Sea in Tokyo, Japan.
Andy has worked with numerous programs around the Southeastern United States including numerous FMBC Finalists and FFCC Champions. Most notably, Andy has been on staff with the “Scholastic A” WGI Finalist, Robinson High School “Starlets” and WGI Medalist, University of South Florida Winter Guard. Andy is currently in his fifth year of service on the FFCC Board of Directors. When Andy is not teaching, he works as a Social Worker at Lakeland Regional Health in Lakeland, FL. He is recently married to his husband, Maurice Elder, and has two wonderful puppies!
Errica Snelling, Color Guard Director
Errica graduated from Robinson High School in 2014 where she participated in the Robinson Starlets Colorguard program. Since then she has marched with the University of South Florida Winterguard; in 2016-17 she will be marching her first season with the USF World Winterguard. In 2015 she was a colorguard technician for Plant High School. This is her second year as the Colorguard Director for Durant High School.
EJ Deleon, Color Guard Instructor
Bio to come!
Kasey Carney, Color Guard Instructor
Bio to come!
Noelle Bertossi, Color Guard Co-Sponsor
Noelle Bertossi was born and raised in Brandon, FL. Noelle received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from Saint Leo University. She attended Durant High School as a student and was also part of the Cougar Pride Marching Band as a color guard member. Noelle is in her third year of teaching and teaches reading.
Julie Nily, Color Guard Co-Sponsor
Mrs. Nily is a 2008 graduate from Durant High School and in 2012 earned a Bachelor’s of Education degree from the University of North Florida. She is currently in her second year as a reading teacher here at Durant High School.
Growing up with a parent in the Armed Forces, Mrs. Nily had the opportunity to live in many different places most notably, Iceland. She is one of four girls and has a daughter, Lily; who will be two this October. She is her world! They have two dogs, a lab/pit bull named Marvin and a beagle/doxin named Ginger.
Mrs. Nily is really looking forward to this upcoming year as a co-sponsor and teacher!