Matt Glickstein is a 31-year-old songwriter and musician born and raised in Kaneohe, Hawaii. His commitment to helping the environment, his community, and those in need has led him to writing Songs for a Better World.
Songs For a Better World was inspired by the tragic events that took place in Japan’s earthquake and tsunami of March 2011. Glickstein was moved to create a music video tribute to bring comfort to all those affected, and composed Steppingstone: A Benefit Ballad for Japan.
In January 2012, Glickstein collaborated with students from Lanai High and Elementary School to write and record several songs and music videos. Working together with their classroom teacher, Sandy Patterson, Glickstein and Lanai’s fourth grade class (Class of 2020) wrote songs about peace (Singing to the World), the environment (Every Day is Earth Day and Being Green), and more. The children’s passion inspired ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro (pictured left) to accompany them in their first music video.
The work of Glickstein and his students has generated local, national, and international recognition. The Singing to the World music video was shown worldwide during two Dalai Lama events in Honolulu in April 2012, and the song was also selected as a finalist in the John Lennon Song Writing Contest. The Every Day is Earth Day music video won the Debris From the Sea Contest, as well as the Project Earth 2012 Earth Day Contest (national). Dream What Could Be Done, a song and music video about Hawaii’s homeless, was featured in the Huffington Post, and Glickstein was selected to be the opening speaker at the Statewide Homeless Awareness Conference. In honor of their accomplishments, Glickstein and his students were formally recognized by the Maui County Council, and received a Proclamation from Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa.
In November, 2012, One World, a music video about the past, present, and future of Lana’i, and the hopeful realization of Larry Ellison’s vision, was selected as the winner of the Eia’o Lana’i Film and Video Contest, sponsored by the Four Seasons Resorts Lana’i and the High Maka Maka Film Society.
A lover of musical theatre and the performing arts, Glickstein co-founded the Lanai Academy of Performing Arts (LAPA) in February of 2013. He co-wrote the music for Island Below the Star, an original children’s musical, with senior Grant Choo (Lanai High and Elementary Class of 2013). LAPA produced and performed five sold out shows in the Lanai Playhouse in May of 2013. In 2014, LAPA performed successful runs of Disney's 101 Dalmatians KIDS (June) and Annie Jr (December). In the summer of 2015, LAPA performed Getting to Know...The Sound of Music. In September 2015, LAPA began a new after-school program called Broadway Junior. Activities include singing, dancing, acting, theatre and drama games, and school and community performances.
Glickstein is currently serving as the music director of LAPA, and is also enjoying his new role as a stay-at-home dad for his son, Noah, who was born in June of 2015.