Sean Wallace '23

Find the Perfect Rhythm
“What’s great about percussion is that, in addition to the conductor, percussion brings everyone together. We keep the tempo,” shares Sean Wallace.

Sean started playing the drums when he was nine years old. As a rising PVI freshman, Sean planned to play football and join band, but his mom was worried he would have too much on his plate, and wanted him to choose one. After speaking with his middle school conductor, Sean opted for band and never looked back.

“I’ve been so fortunate. Band really brought me into PVI. Without band, I wouldn’t have met my closest friends.”

Sean was involved in several music groups, including symphonic band and pep band, and new initiatives such as the PVI drumline and the beginnings of a marching band. Sean found that playing different percussion instruments — such as timpani, snare drum, xylophone, and bells, to name just a few — helped him with multitasking and used different parts of his brain. He also gained a strong sense of focus. “You need to really focus to make sure you play everything right. That’s what I try to improve on every day in order to become a better drummer.”

Many of his favorite PVI memories involve drumline. In addition to performing at the spring pep rally, the drumline led the PVI group at both the DC and Virginia March for Life. “The crowd was hyped up. Everyone seemed to really enjoy it.”

Sean’s time at PVI included several leadership roles. He was percussion section leader in Symphonic Band, a two-year cross country captain, secretary of Tri-M music honor society, and was inducted into National Honor Society. “I definitely have a sense of leadership I will carry with me. PVI taught me that the way to be a leader is to be an example to others.”

Over the summer, Sean will play in his middle school conductor’s community band before heading off to St. Bonaventure in New York. While undecided on a major, he is interested in business and communications, and plans to audition for symphonic band.

“As I move on from PVI, I want everyone to respect others and themselves enough to be a good example. I want underclassmen to be leaders too — that’s how to form the best team.”

When asked about football versus band, Sean grins widely and says, “The PVI football team is awesome; I love the football team. But I made the right decision. I’ve really enjoyed myself and I’m really happy.”
St. Paul VI Catholic High School is a private Diocesan Catholic preparatory school for girls and boys in grades 9-12 in Chantilly, Virginia, seeking to help our students Grow in Grace and Wisdom. Our school is part of the Diocese of Arlington and offers rigorous academics, an inclusive community focused on spiritual and leadership formation, and a proud athletic tradition featuring nationally renowned programs competing in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference and the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association.

St. Paul VI Catholic High School is an accredited member of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.