Steve Vai and Berklee Attempt World Record for Largest Online Guitar Lesson

By
Berklee Office of Communications
February 10, 2011
Steve Vai

Berkleemusic, Berklee's online continuing education division, along with Grammy Award–winning guitar virtuoso Steve Vai, announces a call to action for guitarists around the world to join forces and set the Guinness world record for the largest online guitar lesson on March 3, 2011. This first-of-its-kind initiative will bring together the worldwide community of guitarists in an unprecedented online celebration of music education.

Vai, who is currently recording a new album and preparing for an extensive world tour, is a Berklee alumnus with a devoted fan base in more than 70 countries. Although he is not a guitar instructor, Vai is a passionate advocate for music exploration and hopes the event will encourage players to continue to cultivate their own unique style and spirit on the instrument. "This online event, and the larger efforts Berkleemusic is making to teach students around world, is a great example of the collaboration that happens at Berklee," says Vai. "Whether you're in Boston, Bombay, or Brussels, we'll all be together on March 3rd."

The World's Largest Online Guitar Lesson is a one-time event that takes place Thursday, March 3 at 1:30 p.m. EST. Berkleemusic has partnered with Livestream, the preeminent live streaming video platform, to host this event in their New York studio. 

Vai's free online lesson will last 30 minutes and will provide a look into his technique with a focus on how guitarists can develop and gain insight into their own playing. In order to further engage with his fans, Vai is also encouraging participants to submit questions to him online, which he will answer onstage at the conclusion of his online lesson. Interested participants can submit questions at Berkleemusic.com.

As a gesture of its commitment to music education, Berkleemusic will donate one dollar for every person that joins the online lesson to the Steve Vai Online Scholarship Fund, which is designed to reward and assist outstanding students studying in Berkleemusic's multi-course certificate programs.

"Steve Vai is one of the most popular guitarists on the planet, and deservedly so," says Dave Kusek, CEO of Berkleemusic. "We're thrilled and honored to partner with Steve for this unique online guitar lesson, and excited to play a part in exposing a record-setting number of guitarists from around the world to his 'otherworldly' techniques."

Berkleemusic and Vai have also partnered to author a brand new 12-week online course: Steve Vai Guitar Techniques. This course presents students with the chance to gain a deep understanding of Vai's death-defying playing styles, repertoire, techniques, and musical concepts from anywhere in the world, and incorporate their learnings into their own playing. The Steve Vai Guitar Techniques online course builds upon the renowned guitar curriculum that Berklee has been providing to students for decades. The course is now open for enrollment for the school's spring term, which begins on April 4, 2011.