The Prep Gets a New Neglia

Taking on your first career job can be frightening, challenging, or exciting for any
person. For the case of SHP’s new band teacher Mr. Neglia, son of the previous band conductor
Mr. Neglia senior, he would describe it as a “motivation.”
It is an immense task to jump into a program of 125 students and teach them how to read
and play music, especially the freshmen. It is normal for someone to feel stress in this situation.
Mr. Neglia commented, “I wouldn’t call it stress. Of course, the workload is a constant
challenge, but it is manageable if you prepare ahead of time and take things one day at a time.
The hardest part of the job is being aware of the fact that I am responsible for guiding young
musical minds. I want to push students in the right direction and encourage everyone to enjoy
their time making and learning about music. Music is such a huge part of who I am, and I’m just
humbled by the fact that I’ve been given the great privilege to share my passion and enthusiasm
with others.”
Of course, to teach anything, someone must have a background at it first. Mr. Neglia
“began around 6 or 7 years old, and drum lessons started pretty soon after that.” He has even
played in very prestigious symphonies including the New York and New Jersey Youth
Symphonies. At his time at SHP, Mr. Neglia played saxophone, soprano saxophone,
percussion, and even drums in Jazz Band.
This is what Mr. Neglia had to comment on his musical experience after SHP: “I did my
musical studies at the Mason Gross School of the Arts, William Paterson University, and the
Juilliard School. I spent time playing with national and international touring groups and have
played with professional symphony orchestras, too. I also did a lot of studio session work,
recording with amazingly talented artists in some pretty cool places. Honestly though, some of
my best musical memories are from SHP where I played in band and jazz band, sang in
a capella, and did the musicals.” He is a very experienced musician.
Of course, the highlight of being a band teacher are the concerts they conduct. Most new
teachers might feel pressure at this thought, but Mr. Neglia has a much more relaxed approach:
“If I’m the guy with the drumsticks in my hands, I’m totally cool and relaxed. Leading others,
and giving them the best chance to succeed is a totally different kind of pressure. That being
said, I’d call it excitement, not nerves.”
As with the case of most the SHP staff, Mr. Neglia is an alumnus. The great environment
The Prep provides makes its students want to come and give back to the school. Mr. Neglia
describes his SHP experience: “I had four amazing years at SHP. I made life-long friends and
learned so much. While I learned a lot in all of my classes, I also learned so much about myself.
I’m comfortable in my own skin and love the life that I’ve built. I believe that my time at The
Prep set me up for success.”
The Prep can really open your eyes to what you live to do in life and
gives you the best opportunity to succeed at it.