Mediterranean Music

Note: this minor requires that students are accepted into the study abroad program and spend a semester at Berklee's Valencia campus.

The Mediterranean region is a meeting place of three continents and many countries and cultures. The history of the Mediterranean region is complex, spanning ancient civilizations up to modern-day conflicts. The Mediterranean music minor will support the Mediterranean Music Institute’s mission to study Mediterranean musical traditions and to contribute to the cultural exchange of folk-based music from the region. Students in this minor will be required to spend a semester at Berklee's Valencia campus in the Study Abroad program; this campus is ideally situated on the Mediterranean coast in Spain, which has historically been a crossroads for the many cultures of the region.

This minor has a student-directed element via the required course MEDM-P498 Directed Study, which will allow the student to focus on a particular area of interest within the broader context of Mediterranean music. This minor highlights an area of the world that has become increasingly important in contemporary music, but which has not often been examined in its regional context. The diversity of the curriculum reflects the diversity of the Mediterranean region itself, and students in this program will gain an appreciation of the depth, variety, and interdependence of the cultural and musical traditions of the region and their broader impact on global music in general.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of a minor in Mediterranean music, students will:

  • Perform several styles of Mediterranean music.

  • Compose several styles of Mediterranean music.

  • Analyze the cultural context of music from the region.

  • Apply aural concepts of a specific musical expression of the region, including its stylistic context and harmonic, melodic, and rhythmic components.

  • Analyze Mediterranean music's influence on other music of the region and the world.

  • Synthesize important Mediterranean musical styles, musicians, instruments, forms, compositional techniques, and performance practices.

  • Apply the compositional elements of Mediterranean music in their own work and performance.

Required Courses

PFSS-P301 Survey of Mediterranean Musical Styles (2 credits)

MEDM-P498 Directed Study in Mediterranean Music (2 credits)

Performance Electives (choose any combination that equals three credits)

ENGB-400 Middle Eastern Fusion Ensemble (1 credit)

ENGB-221 Contemporary Middle Eastern Music (1 credit)

ENGB-P211 Qantara Berklee (1 credit)

PSHR-P270 Traditional Microtonal Theory and Application (1 credit)

PSW-235 World Percussion for the Nonpercussionist (2 credits)

PSW-335 World Percussion for the Percussionist (2 credits)

Theory/Composition Elective (choose one)

CM-361 World Music Resources in Composition (2 credits)

HR-361 World Music Materials and Concepts (2 credits)

CW-P227 Flamenco Music: Composition and Arranging (2 credits)

History/Culture Elective (choose one)

LHIS-216 History of the Middle East (3 credits)

LHIS-P248 Palestinian-Israeli Relations (3 credits)

LSOC-213 Music and Peace (3 credits)

Six or seven courses are required for completion of minor, depending on one's performance elective selections.

For more information, contact:

Contemporary Writing and Production Department
150 Massachusetts Avenue, Room 218
617 747-8629/8630
Chair: Matthew Nicholl, mnicholl@berklee.edu