141 Veteran Music Educator Robert Trocchia Takes us to the Mountaintop

James Sturtevant Hacking Engagement show

Summary: In the fall of 1979, I was a freshman in a college dorm trying to adjust to my new surroundings. One thing that I’ve always done to ground myself has been to play the music that I love. I grew up in a small town in Southeastern Ohio that was not diverse. And yet, my musical taste was totally urban. I loved the Isley Brothers and the Brothers Johnson and Earth Wind and Fire. <br><br>One transformational afternoon, I put on some of my jams, which inspired a guy a couple of doors down to walk to my room, pop his head in, and then joyously proclaim, “I can’t believe you're listening to these jams. I didn't think anyone on this floor loved the Isley Brothers.” That guy was Vince Trocchia and a lifelong friendship evolved from this initial interaction. <br><br>In October of that magical year, Vince invited me to his house for dinner. I eagerly accepted. I was treated to a magnificent Italian meal and met Vince’s wonderful family. I was so intrigued by his dad Robert.<br><br>Robert was the iconic local music teacher at Fairfield Union High School in Breman, Ohio. <br>His choir from a small Ohio town:<br>Performed in many of the great cathedrals in the western world<br>Appeared on nearly fifty TV shows<br>And was named one of the top high school choirs in the United States.<br><br>It was evident from the moment that I met him how much Robert loved his life. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my future at this point, but his example impacted me. I viewed him as immensely rich. This evaluation had nothing to do with his stock portfolio.<br><br>Robert is now 86-years-old. You would never guess that when you listen to his powerful voice. He seems exactly the same to me as he did forty years ago. <br><br>When I learned that Robert authored a book about teaching, I knew that I had to get it and that I had to have him as a guest on this podcast. Mountaintop Moments is a wonderful book for any teacher, at any grade level, teaching any subject. Embrace the message of this wise sage!