Director of Bands
South Effingham High School
Associate Director of Bands
South Effingham High School
Sean McBride has been the Director of Bands at South Effingham High School since 2004 and has taught in Effingham County since 1999. Under his direction, the South Effingham Band program has grown to over 175 students and offers three concert ensembles, two jazz bands, marching band, and a pep band. Under Mr. McBride’s direction, South Effingham ensembles have consistently received superior ratings and various awards at area and regional events. South Effingham band students have consistently placed into the Georgia Music Educators Association’s District I Honor Band and the All-State Band and Orchestra.
The South Effingham Wind Ensemble has won many accolades and awards since the school’s inception in 1996. The Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University chose the Wind Ensemble as an Honor Band of Georgia in 2011. The Georgia State University School of Music chose the Wind Ensemble to participate in the Georgia Bands of Distinction Honor Clinic in February 2014. The SEHS Wind Ensemble was a featured guest performer at the University of Georgia’s January High School Band Festival in 2008 and 2013. In 2014, the SEHS Wind Ensemble was chosen to perform at the Georgia Music Educators Association's In-Service Conference in Savannah, Georgia.
Mr. McBride graduated with his Bachelor of Music Education in 1996 and Master of Music Education in 1999 from the University of Georgia. Mr. McBride is currently working towards a Doctorate in Musical Arts from Boston University. Mr.McBride studied conducting with Dr. John Culvahouse, H. Dwight Satterwhite, Dr. Pierce Arrant, and Mr. Mark Cedel. Mr. McBride studied trumpet with Dr. Edward Sandor and Dr. Moffatt Williams. Mr. McBride is very grateful to his first band directors, Mr. Duane Grewe and Mr. Bill Toovey, for their hard work, dedication, and love of music and students.
Mr. McBride has served as guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator around the state of Georgia. Mr. McBride serves as a GMEA District organizer for All-State auditions and the 11-12 Honor Band. Mr. Mr. McBride is a Member of the National Association for Music Education, Georgia Music Educators Association, Phi Beta Mu, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, and Kappa Delta Pi. Mr. McBride received the National Band Association Citation Excellence 2008 and 2013. Mr.McBride has been named a Savannah Morning News Teacher of Excellence in 2006, 2007, and 2011. Mr.McBride lives with his wife, Melissa, and their sons, Alex and Patrick, in Rincon, Georgia.
Mr. Ben Barber is excited to begin his first year as the Assistant Director of Bands at South Effingham High School, where he assists in instructing the Marching Mustangs as well as conducting the Symphonic Band and Jazz Ensemble II. A native of Jasper, Georgia, he graduated from Pickens High School in 2012, and graduated magna cum laude from Reinhardt University with two Bachelor’s degrees in Music Education and Trumpet Performance.
During his time at Reinhardt University, Mr. Barber was an active participant in the Reinhardt University Concert Choir and Chamber Singers as a vocalist, and served as principal trumpet and section leader of the Reinhardt University Symphonic Winds, Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Brass Quintet, and the Screaming Eagle Marching Band, where he was also the brass captain and a featured soloist. He has performed in a variety of prestigious venues and events including two GMEA Conferences, the 2014 American Bandmasters Association Convention, Carnegie Hall in New York City, and the recording of the Chamber Singers’ first ever professional album under the direction of Dr. Martha Shaw. He is an in-demand freelance trumpet player in the North Georgia area, has performed in various pit orchestras, and was a founding member of the Georgia Wind Symphony; he has also been involved in numerous contemporary worship bands as a bass guitarist. His past trumpet instructors include Mr. Rob Opitz, Mr. Steven Watson, and Mr. Clark Hunt.
In addition to his performing experience, Mr. Barber is also a well sought out music educator and conductor. In 2012, he was the student conductor of the Pickens High School Symphonic Winds and was selected to be a guest conductor of the University of West Georgia Wind Ensemble. In 2016, he was the winner of the first annual Reinhardt University Instrumental Conducting Competition, and President/Honor Band Clinic Coordinator of one of the largest CNAfME chapters in the state of Georgia. In 2017, he received the Phi Beta Mu “Most Outstanding Music Education Student” Award. While student teaching at Freedom Middle School (Canton, GA), Mr. Barber taught sectionals, full band rehearsals, and conducting/leadership seminars for the 6th, 7th and 8th grade bands. He has studied conducting under Dr. David Gregory and Mr. David Harrison.
His current professional affiliations include the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), Georgia Music Educators Association (GMEA), the National Band Association (NBA), and Kappa Delta Pi.