Meet Dr Matt Mckay – Teacher of Music and Junior Sector
How long have you been
working at San Anton School?
have been working at
San Anton for two years now.
Have you always lived in Malta?
No, I moved
from London in 2014, after retiring from the British Army having
served 24 years.
Tell us about your passion for music.
My love for
music grew mainly because of my Dad. He was a jazz musician playing the
saxophone and flute. I remember sitting in the kitchen at home for
hours listening to him practice. He would take me to gigs and sometimes I
would get to play percussion with the band, which I loved! I also
remember sleeping in the double bass players` case behind the stage! I was fifteen when I first got to play flute at a jazz concert with my Dad,
however my saxophone studies came later whilst in the army.
army career, I was a musician in The
band of Her majesty's Irish Guards. This saw me tour all over the
world and also play thousands of engagements in London including,
Changing of the Guards at Buckingham Palace and the Queen`s Birthday
Parade. I was also principal flute
for the Irish Guards Orchestra, which, among other duties, would play for
investitures at the palace.
for music really took a grip of my life, which led me to study for my
Masters and eventually a Doctorate in performance. My last three years in
the army saw me take on an instructors post at the Royal Military
School of Music in Twickenham. This is when I really started to love
What do you love about teaching?
I love to try and
inspire my students in whatever I'm trying to teach them, be it music or
discipline. When I see a student really understand
my point or really enjoy my lesson it makes my day!
If I manage
to connect to a student who is having difficulties for whatever reason I know I've had a great day. I actually had one
yesterday!! :-) My recent trip to Cambodia to
work with orphans and help at a street kitchen was a really
special time in my teaching career. As part of Do Project, a
Maltese NGO headed up by my friend and colleague Chiara Hyzler, my wife Fay and I helped teach English
through music, cooking, drama and dance. This is an experience we will never forget and only served to intensify my love of
What do you aim to achieve as the newly appointed
Discipline Co-ordinator in Junior Sector?
I want to
instil core values, respect for others, respect for
ourselves, and empathy for others. I want our students to be
able to listen and think before they act or speak. I want our students to
care for their classmates and feel part of the San Anton family. I want
our students to realise that being kind, friendly and caring towards others
will actually make them feel good about themselves.
What is the most challenging part of the job?
'fun music teachers hat' and then dealing with things as the 'Discipline
Coordinator' was a challenge at first but I've managed to get the right
balance now...I think!
What changes can you see in the educational
methodology at San Anton School to when you were at school?
I went to a
private boarding school in Norfolk in the UK. My time at school was not a
happy one and this is one of the things that helps me
to empathise with students who are having a tough time at school.
Educational methodology and my old school should really
not be in the same sentence!
What is your favourite childhood memory?
I remember listening
to my Dad play his sax and hearing people say how good he was and what a
beautiful sound he had. I was very proud.
Favourite Book .
I am David by Anne Holm
I am a Scuba
diving instructor so I love to dive. I have a stand-up paddle
board and kayaks and love anything to do with the sea really. I
also have studied various martial arts since I was about eleven but I'm getting too old for all that now.
I have two
dogs, one is a Bulldog called Ted and the other is a Sharpei
called Alfie who we rescued from Noah`s Ark dog sanctuary.
spending time with my wife, Fay and my son Jack, normally at a beach
somewhere. My recent mid-life crisis has been the purchase of a
very big motorbike to be ridden to school very