BMP Teaching Artist Spotlight | Matt Henegan
Updated: Dec 13, 2021
At the Boston Music Project, we are proud to have an exceptional team with a diverse background of teaching and performance experiences. When our Teaching Artists are not teaching music lessons, they are pursuing their own professional careers as active performers, composers, music producers, dancers, and more!
This year we are excited to welcome Matt Henegan to the BMP Team as a Lower Strings Teaching Artist!
Cellist, teaching artist, and arts administrator Matthew Henegan joined The Boston Music Project in September 2021 after completing the Bachelor of Music degree in Cello Performance from The Boston Conservatory.
Matthew is very passionate about music education, maintaining a private studio and teaching at the In Tune Music School in addition to BMP. Matthew’s teaching style focuses on maximum efficiency in technique and practice, relating music to other aspects of life, and instilling a sense of self-confidence through music-making.
We asked Matt to share a bit more about his musical background and his life in and around music.
Who were some of your musical inspirations growing up?
"Growing up, my biggest musical inspiration was my Uncle Brian, from whom I inherited my first cello after he passed away. He was primarily a pianist who played at restaurants, bars, and nightclubs, but had taken up the cello as well later in life. He always encouraged me to listen to classical music and I heard him perform live several times. As luck would have it, a cello teacher had just moved down the road after I received the cello and the rest is history."
What energizes or excites you most both as a teacher and as a performer?
"Seeing the development of my students as cello players as well as human beings keeps me motivated as a teacher."
"Not only am I trying to help them to improve their musicianship, I want them to be able to use things they’ve learned through these musical experiences in other aspects of their lives."
"As a performer, discovering and learning a piece of music for the first time with other musicians keeps me fresh and on my toes. I try to keep my repertoire constantly expanding, especially through new music."
Can you talk about the transition from an intern position to a Teaching Artist position with BMP?
"Since I was involved with the organization for almost a year on the administrative side, I found the transition to teaching at BMP to be very smooth. It was very helpful to already be familiar with the facets of the program, the differences between each orchestra, and the mission of the program. During my time as the Arts Administration Intern, I worked with the Vivaldi Orchestra through Zoom one day a week as an assistant teacher, working 1-on-1 with cellists. I was eager to expand that work when I was offered the Teaching Artist position in the fall."
Can you share a favorite moment/memory from your time as a Teaching Artist at BMP?
"My favorite moment so far was in a recent rehearsal when the students were able to play a large portion of the piece we are working on, Cripple Creek, without stopping. Since the pandemic started, our students haven’t been able to play together in-person until recently and getting back into that mode was a challenge. Over the course of a few weeks, we’ve been able to get them back into being prime orchestral musicians. I am very impressed and proud of their work in such a short amount of time."
Outside of music, what are some things you do that bring you joy?
"In my spare time, I am an avid tennis player and fan of watching the sport — I often use tennis analogies when explaining certain concepts to my cello students!"
To learn more about Matt, we invite you to read his full biography on our Teaching Artists page.