12/27/2012 4:30:00 PMMax Hayes Students form Latin band
Seven students at Max S. Hayes High School are learning Latin music – on their lunch hour. They are studying guitar and Latin instruments such as maracas (rhythm instruments that are shaken), guiro (a percussion instrument made from a gourd) and cuatro (similar to a lute).
Juan Leon, an ESL teacher at Max Hayes and a musician himself, organized the group and is hoping to expand it. Right now, all the members are Latino, but he hopes to bring in multicultural students and make the band an ambassador for diversity.
The group is taking its talents to other schools and into the broader community. They performed at Walton PreK-8, at a staff member’s retirement celebration at Max Hayes and at a Cleveland Teachers Union event. Leon is working with Dave’s Supermarkets on a plan for the band to perform at Dave’s Mercado on Ridge Road – a paying gig. They hope to schedule more community performances to raise money to purchase instruments.