Formally joining Haverford’s faculty this year, Mr. Matt Mastronardi brings years of experience in music and musical theater to his role as upper school music teacher, Director of The Notables, and Director of Glee Club.
Although he is new to his various roles this year, Mr. Mastronardi is no stranger to the school community. Having worked on various theater productions at Haverford since 2017, Mr. Mastronardi is excited to be serving the school in an increased capacity.
“I’ve always loved working here,” Mr. Mastronardi said. “I’m loving that I feel like I have a home base.”
Mr. Mastronardi thinks his experience here eased his transition into his new role, but he also credits the school’s students and faculty for his smooth adaptation.
“The students have been awesome. The fellow teachers here have taught me so much. They’re very special and made me want to continue to come here.”Mr. Matt Mastronardi
“The students have been awesome. The fellow teachers here have taught me so much. They’re very special and made me want to continue to come here,” Mr. Mastronardi said.
Mr. Mastronardi is an artist with roots in musical theater. He has worked at “almost every theater in [Philadelphia],” including the Arden Theatre Company and the Walnut Street Theater. His passion for musical theater and performance extends into the classroom.
Mr. Mastronardi said, “Any time I couldn’t be on stage as an actor, it was amazing to continue to make theater with students of my own, and to instill that love of these arts, of music.”
Like most people, Mr. Mastronardi had influential teachers with whom he connected when he was growing up. He shared that he “definitely connected with [his] music and theater teachers the most,” and he knew he wanted to stay in the arts. When the opportunity to teach at different theaters presented itself in the form of musical theater programs, Mr. Mastronardi began teaching classes and enjoyed the experience. Since then, he has also taught at Montgomery County Community College.
One of Mr. Mastronardi’s many new responsibilities at Haverford is the leadership of The Notables, the school’s elite a capella group. Already well-established both at Haverford and in the Philadelphia area, The Notables are known for their light-hearted, fun performances, as well as their talented singers. As he’s begun his work with the group, Mr. Mastronardi has noticed that its unique community allows for a simultaneously fun and serious rehearsal environment.
“We give space in the rehearsal time for all of us to be a community together. We usually have a dinner before our rehearsals so we can all talk about our lives. I think having that time before we start the real work is really valuable so that we all feel connected before we start the real work,” Mr. Mastronardi said.
“They’ve done a lot of the same songs year after year. [One goal for them is] coming up with ideas of material that they care about, that they want to share.”Mr. Matt Mastronardi
This year, Mr. Mastronardi would like to see the group expand and take ownership of its repertoire. He said, “They’ve done a lot of the same songs year after year. [One goal for them is] coming up with ideas of material that they care about, that they want to share.”
What The Notables may want to share is important to Mr. Mastronardi, as he believes that music tells a story. He wants stories and messages to be “conveyed in the material that [The Notables] choose.” For Mr. Mastronardi, “It’s not just about learning these songs and learning new material. It’s about what we’re saying with these songs.”