LITTLE SILVER – Red Bank Regional (RBR) junior Matthew Rosen of Little Silver has achieved a notable accomplishment in his musical career with his selection to the exclusive All-Eastern Honors Band.
Matt will play bass clarinet for the ensemble. The band is composed of 150 of the best musicians in 12 states on the East Coast from Maine to Virginia, with only 16 percent of that number coming from New Jersey.
The ensemble convenes every other year, and the players are picked from among the best musicians in their state, having performed with their All-State Honor Musical Ensembles, which alone is a major feat.
Matt achieved this last year, along with the Region II Band and All-Shore Band honors. He was seated as first chair alto clarinet in the 2012 All State Wind Ensemble and was also accepted to the wind ensemble on contra alto and bass clarinet. He played first chair bass clarinet in the 2011 and 2012 All-Shore Band.
The All-Eastern Band is one of five honors ensembles and includes concert band, symphony orchestra, mixed chorus, treble voice chorus and jazz ensemble. The groups, which feature 780 of the most musically talented high school students in the Eastern Region of the U.S., will give a virtuoso performance on Sunday, April 7, at the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts, Mortensen Hall, in Hartford, Conn.
Matt began his deep interest with the clarinet at age 10. It has been a major focus of his life ever since. He has studied both privately and as an instrumental music major in RBR’s Academy of the Visual and Performing Arts, where he plays in the orchestra as well as the concert and jazz bands. “I have only known Matt for about three months; however, I quickly learned what an accomplished musician he is,” said RBR’s new band teacher Ross Chu. “He has developed a mastery of his instrument that is very impressive for someone as young as he is. His love of music and his desire to learn and improve his playing ability is truly inspiring.”
Matt’s long-time private teacher, Jennifer Brush, coincidentally was the last RBR student to make the All Eastern Band in 2003. She is currently the Markham Place Middle School orchestra and choir director.
Matt plays bass clarinet in the Rutgers University Symphonic Band, conducted by Darryl Bott. He was recommended to the position by Dr. Maureen Hurd, chairman of the Mason Gross Woodwind Department. He is the only high school student to ever play with this ensemble. Additionally, Matthew studies the soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones with the well-known saxophonist Dr. Paul Cohen from Manhattan School of Music and Rutgers.
Next to his selection to the All Eastern Band, Matt considers his biggest accomplishment to be his acceptance to the highly competitive Manhattan School of Music Pre-College Program where he studies clarinet with Renee Rosen. Matt spends every Saturday in Manhattan in this prestigious program. He hopes this will help him realize another dream: that of studying music at this exceptional conservatory of music, although he is also very fond of Rutgers’ music program at the Mason Gross School of the Arts.
“I just love it and believe I was born to play,” Matt said.