L.A. Newsbriefs

By
Justine Taormino
Aaron Kaplan ’96

Aaron Kaplan ’96

This summer featured a flurry of activity among members of Berklee’s L.A. community. Elik Alvarez ’00 won the Goldspirit award in the Best Documentary Score category at the International Film Music Festival in Córdoba, Spain, where he served as the guest conductor of the Córdoba Symphony Orchestra during the awards ceremony.

Marty Silverstone ’03 released the EP St. Sauveur that features original music and has become affiliated with the Boston-based charity Artists for Humanity. Silverstone and Johannes Rassina ’04 coproduced the record and Evan Brown ’05 played guitar.

Vivian de Aguiar-Buff ’12 is a technical score engineer for movies working with composer Henry Jackman’s company Sacred Tiger. She has worked with Jackman on the animated films Turbo, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and This Is the End. On her own, she’s composed for short films Na Cama, Stiff, and Moneytubes.

Thus far the vocal trio KING, has enjoyed a banner year. Comprising Paris Strother ’08; her twin sister, Amber Strother; and friend Anita Bias, the group began the year on a high note when Robert Glasper sang their song “Move Love” on the Black Radio recording. The album won a Grammy in the Best R&B Album category. KING released the first single from its upcoming album In the Meantime, and was featured in Ebony and Billboard magazines. As well, the group has officially announced its partnership with Prince.

Congratulations are in order for our Emmy Award nominees: David Schwartz ’74, Rob Mathes ’84, Jason Tregoe Newman ’99, George Haddad ’99, Daniel Colman ’95, Brian Riordan ’95, Pablo Munguia ’97. We go to print before the September 22 broadcast and send best wishes to all seven nominees.

The Berklee Center in Los Angeles has launched the Play It Forward initiative that encourages L.A.-based alumni to make a gift of any amount to the Berklee Fund. It’s not the dollars that matter but the number of alumni who join us. To learn more, visit www.berklee.edu/giving/la-play-it-forward to learn more! Also, our office recently held a Green Room networking event that drew more than 100 people. As well, Julie Sachs ’09 hosted a pool party for our Women in Tune Group.

The composing and guitar playing of Aaron Kaplan ’96 have brought him to the forefront of a new trend: custom scoring for reality shows. Through his affiliation with Barefoot Music, a collective of composers, he started working on such shows as Top Chef, Project Runway, and The Real Housewives series. Kaplan recently launched GrooveBank “micro-libraries” offering defining themes and sonic branding for TV shows. With GrooveBank, Kaplan is bridging the gap between production libraries and custom scores. All the GrooveBank cues are composed, produced, and mixed in house. Additionally, Kaplan has created Moonshine Music Company, a country music library.

As a studio guitarist, Kaplan played on Rod Stewart’s Great American Songbook recordings and was featured on the Ironman soundtrack. Kaplan has worked with numerous Berklee alumni during his time in Los Angeles, including scoring mixer Kevin Globerman ’95, bassists Chris Golden and Eric Holden ’99. While at Barefoot, Kaplan supervised then-intern Ali Memarian ’06, who was later hired as a music supervisor. Speaking of the many professional contacts he’s made in the L.A. community, Kaplan says, “I think I know more people from Berklee out here than when I was at Berklee! It’s a tremendous network.”

That’s it for now.