Berklee-Bound Matthew Kim ’24 Enjoys Teamwork Aspect of CBA

During his time at Christian Brothers Academy, Matthew Kim ’24 has had two very distinct passions: music and fencing.

On the surface, there are not many similarities between the two, however, Kim sees an important link.

“I spend a lot of my time here at CBA making connections with people through clubs and sports,” he says. “It helped me realize that these types of clubs and sports aren’t there just to fill up your time. It is important as a team to bring that club or team together to get from where you were before to a high level at the end of the year.”

The Marlboro-native will need his teamwork skills at the collegiate level, when he heads to Berklee College of Music in the fall.

Kim will further his musical skills at the famed Boston-based school by majoring in film scoring, but he has had a plethora of incredible experiences over the past few years.

In 2023, he was a member of the New York Youth Orchestra, who won “Best Orchestral Performance” at the Grammy Awards. It was the the first Grammy win ever by a youth orchestra.

“I was able to proudly look back at how far I had come since first joining the orchestra,” he said last year after winning the award. “It made me appreciate all of the hours of rehearsals that went into our playing, as well as my parents and cello teacher who are always so committed to supporting me.”

Kim has been working for years to refine his cello skills, developing the confidence that he can play with some of the best young musicians around. His love for music stems from his mother, who is a piano and organ player. Both Kim and his brother, who also plays the cello, quickly picked up the music gene.

During his senior year at CBA, Kim has been able to put his exceptional cello playing skills into action on the Henderson Theater stage. He was featured in the Winter Concert’s opening number, before playing in this spring’s production of The SpongeBob Musical. It was the first time that Kim had participated in a pit band, only adding to his already long resume.

“I was expecting just rehearsals and the performance,” he remembers. “The community is a way to not just connect with people, but also to understand other people’s backgrounds and learn more about yourself as you perform with these people. Especially in pit band, a lot of it is about chemistry and you need to know how to play with other fellow students in order to perform at your best.”

It is no surprise that Kim complimented the CBA music teachers for helping him the most during his time at the Academy. Kim enjoyed his AP Music Theory class with Mr. Lopez this year, in addition to him using CBA’s music director as a sounding board as he pursued Berklee.

As graduation approaches, Kim looks back on his time at the Academy with a sense of appreciation.

“At first, I thought I would just be working hard at an academically-challenging school, however the importance of the connections that you and the teachers can make, it helps you realize that I am really cared about at this school and these teachers really want the best for me.”

About Christian Brothers Academy:
Christian Brothers Academy (CBA) is a private, Catholic, academic preparatory school for boys located in Lincroft, New Jersey. Founded in 1959 and taught in the Lasallian tradition, CBA is dedicated to helping students become intellectually mature and morally responsible leaders for society. Through generous contributions from family and friends of the Academy, CBA awards over $2.3 million in scholarships and financial aid to current students. Experience the Academy at