Seabury Hall’s new music teacher Mr. Phillip Proctor starts the year on a high note

Alex Abraham, Assistant Editor

Who is the man quietly composing music in the back of his isolated classroom in the gym parking lot? That would be the incredibly talented and established music instructor Mr. Phillip Proctor who has just joined the Seabury Hall staff this year.

Proctor’s love for music began in high school when he started band classes, and since then Proctor has continued to pursue his passion. After high school, Proctor earned his undergraduate degree in music education and masters in instrumental conducting at East Carolina University. Proctor has now been teaching band and music classes for over eighteen years.

Proctor and his family moved to Maui three years ago after living in North Carolina. Before joining the Seabury Hall staff, Proctor was a teacher and dean of students at Kihei Charter, but after hearing about this school’s opening for a new music director, Proctor jumped on the opportunity to join the Seabury Hall community. He feels that this school is a good fit for him and he enjoys teaching his new students.

“The campus feels like a college. I’m treated as a professional, I’m encouraged to do professional development, and I have the flexibility to do so,” Proctor said.

This year, Proctor is teaching band classes in the upper school and in the middle school. With the help of Mrs. Molly Schad, the choir teacher, Proctor will be prepping his students for an exciting and collaborative showcase in December with the chorus classes.

Schad is also looking forward to the highly anticipated collaborations with Proctor and his band. She believes he will make great contributions to the school’s performing arts programs and is an especially talented musician.

“It will definitely be a transition and different from the past, but he’s energetic, extremely knowledgeable, and is coming in with fresh sets of exciting ideas,” Schad said.

Throughout the year, Proctor intends on exposing his students to a variety of music genres. It is a crucial aspect of learning and teaching band to listen to various artists and to be aware of the different groups of music.

“I try not to limit myself in any particular genre and I take that same philosophy with me when I teach students,” Proctor said.

Music classes are different from regular core classes and Proctor finds them extremely important when broadening a student’s knowledge. “Developmentally, music is great for the brain. All of the performing arts make you focus and have attention to detail which pushes students in a different manner academically,” Proctor said.

It is important to Proctor that his students have the opportunity showcase their talents and experience performing in front of audiences. “The reason I got hooked into the music world was because of those chicken-skin moments, and all I hope to do is give those opportunities to my students,” Proctor said.

In his free time, Proctor likes to spend as much time as possible in the ocean, snorkeling and swimming with his wife and daughter. He also loves to involve himself in the community musically. “I love to freelance as a musician and I just finished orchestrating for ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’, a Maui Academy of Performing Arts theatre production”, Proctor said.

Students who have never picked up an instrument or who are already passionate about music are encouraged to try band. “Everyone starts at the bottom, and everyone will grow and eventually come together as a band. No one should be afraid to start something new. You may end up loving it.”