Video: 'Full Monty' teacher told to keep it on

updated 3/14/2007 10:26:47 AM ET 2007-03-14T14:26:47

A part-time high school music teacher has run afoul of the school district because he's baring his bottom in a community theater production of "The Full Monty."

Jason Brenner, 28, said Tuesday that he refused to quit the show at the Venice Little Theatre despite an ultimatum letter from a school administrator last week.

The district told him to pull out of the show, take himself out of the naked scene or resign his teaching job at Lemon Bay High School. He offered his resignation but is on paid leave pending a meeting with an administrator Thursday.

"For me it's the principle of the thing, because I'm not letting anybody stifle my art," said Brenner, a fledgling musical director, vocal coach and performer who teaches music and chorus at the high school.

Brenner stars as one of the out-of-work steel workers who strip to raise money in the stage adaptation of the hit British movie. They bare their bottoms briefly in the finale of the show, which didn't sit well with the school district.

"Because teachers are held to a higher standard than most people, you have to look at how that affects the community and his role as a classroom teacher," said Barbara Melanson, the school district's director of human resources.

Brenner has vowed to stay with the show through its final performance Sunday.

"(The school district has) been very nice about the whole thing," he said. "It's an unfortunate circumstance, but they've got to do what they've got to do, and I got to do what I got to do."

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