Matt is the director at the SHU Community Theatre, he’s originally from Fairfield and he’s also a dad to Hannah who is two years old. They love to watch Daniel Tiger and Paw Patrol together. And is more popular then one might think…
Where are you originally from and how long have you been in Fairfield?
I grew up in Fairfield. I went to North Stratified School and Fairfield Woods Middle School. My wife Alisa and I moved back here from New York just before our baby was born in 2019.
Tell us about your Family!
Alisa is my wonderful wife who is currently a stay-at-home mom to our two and half year-old daughter Hannah.
One thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I have a lot of these. I spent over 3 years living at various spiritual institutions where I became certified as a yoga teacher, massage therapist, and as a chi gong instructor. I used to live in Maui where I was the personal assistant to Ram Dass, who is an important author in the spirituality field. I am passionate about mental health, and I took 16 classes at NYU during the pandemic towards a Master’s degree in counseling psychology.
One thing you wish someone would have told you about fatherhood?
Build good coping skills for stress because the lack of sleep and lack of free time will magnify any struggles.
What’s your favorite thing about raising a family in Fairfield?
We feel so lucky to be raising our child in Fairfield. It’s such a beautiful place, people are friendly, and there is so much for kids to do. Fairfield has everything.
Best dad hack that makes your life easier?
Always ask Mom, she’s probably already done what I’m trying to figure out how to do.
Tell us about your job, when & why you decided to start in this field?
I’m currently the Director at the SHU Community Theatre in downtown Fairfield where my job is to help to bring inspiring artistic and educational experiences to the area. I also perform on keyboard and guitar one day each week at the legendary Apollo Theater where I have been part of the Amateur Night at the Apollo music team for the last 11 years. I have an extensive background in the music industry both on stage and behind the scenes. I spent several years working on the road with various musical artists like Stevie Wonder, will.i.am, Alicia Keys, Dionne Warwick, and Anita Baker. I’ve also worked on several television shows and Broadway productions. I’m excited to be at the theater because it allows me to integrate all the things I loved about my other jobs, but it’s right here in my hometown.
What do you love about your job? Challenges you face?
My job is creative, and each day is different. I get to try to make a positive difference in my community. I also get to work very closely with the Sacred Heart University community which is filled with talented students, faculty, and staff. A challenge that we have now is letting people know that the theater is open and learning how to best serve the community with our programming.
If you weren’t working in this industry, what do you think you would be doing today?
I think I’d be focusing on trying to make a small contribution in helping with issues that affect our kids such as climate change or gun violence.
Best advice for dads who experience the inevitable guilt handling a career and helping support a family?
Everyone has their own equation for this. I had to make some changes in my life to create what feels like a good balance now.
Who has most influenced you to be the father that you are today?
My parents. They always put my siblings and I first. We always felt like we had them in our corner. I want to make sure that my daughter feels the same way.
What advice would you share with a new dad or other dads?
Strive to be the kind of dad that you needed growing up and learn be understanding of and responsive to your child’s needs.
We love supporting local businesses – favorite places in Fairfield to…
Have Dinner with Family: Mecha Noodle Bar, Archie Moore’s
Grab a Drink with Friends: Old Post Tavern
Have a Date Night: Wafu
Spend time together as a Family: We got so used to being home during the pandemic. Every room in the house is now some sort of playroom.
Outside Activities: Silverman’s Farm, Audubon Society, Sandcastles Playground, the beach
Grab coffee: Shearwater, Granola