Face-Off: Dr. Cless and Mr. Moccia


Audra Soni, Features Editor

BB&N Alumni Upper School (US) Science Teacher and Boys’ Varsity Hockey Coach Anthony Moccia ’10 and US Music Teacher Elliot Cless ’02


Describe high school in 3 words:

Mr. Moccia: Challenging, engaging, pivotal

Dr. Cless: Violin, basketball, full


Favorite sport to watch at home:

Mr. Moccia: Football, soccer, and hockey. [It] depends on [my] mood and which big games are on.

Dr. Cless: University of North Carolina men’s basketball and the Celtics


Favorite memory from high school:

Mr. Moccia: Watching Mr. Kelly, who now works in admissions and teaches history, give a speech to the whole school during assembly. He bared his heart wide open, speaking about his older brother who had passed away years before. It was raw, courageous, and inspiring. I was very proud to be his friend in that moment and still am proud today.

Dr. Cless: Scoring 18 points at an US Boys’ Varsity Basketball game when I was a three-point specialist and playing Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony in front of the Upper School (US).


Favorite book you read at the US:

Mr. Moccia: “Macbeth” is my favorite Shakespeare novel, and my favorite English book was The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, which I read in 10th grade with Ms. Kornet. The Albatross in that book has stuck with me ever since!

Dr. Cless: “Reading Clockwork Orange” by Anthony Burgess in Satire English class with retired US English Teacher Robert Stacey.


Favorite class at BB&N:

Mr. Moccia: English classes, and current topics and research with Dr. Cataldo

Dr. Cless: Orchestra and Ap European History with retired US History Teacher Linda Koffman.


Rate your Junior Prom from 1-10:

Mr. Moccia: Junior prom was an eight because my four closest friends and I went together. Our whole friend group was there, and we tore up the dance floor. Our junior prom was at the Royal Sonesta. “Eventful,” is a word one could use to describe the evening.

Dr. Cless: I was still at an awkward phase trying not to embarrass myself, but by senior year I was all over the dance floor! I went with someone from outside of school, a good choice and I had moderate fun: a six overall.


Favorite instrument to play:

Mr. Moccia: I tried the violin after college, but [I] gave up after a few months due to lack of time and interest.

Dr. Cless: The violin, which I still play. My last “gig” was the “Into the Woods” Pit Orchestra– shout out to the Pit!


Least favorite items from the US Cafeteria:

Mr. Moccia: [I won’t touch] the pasta bar because the sauce does not compare to my [Italian] mom’s cooking.

Dr. Cless: I am vegetarian, so my least favorite dishes involve any form of meat – the cheesesteak subs look particularly unappetizing to me. At school, I only drink my daily coffee and water, so I haven’t tried any of the lunchroom drinks yet.