Berklee Really Eclectic Orchestra (BREO)

Free from music stands and a traditional repertoire, the Berklee Really Eclectic Orchestra (BREO) is a high school ensemble for string players who long for a place to learn to improvise and play popular music together. Originally created during the Berklee Five-Week Summer Performance Program and dubbed the Five-Week String Orchestra, BREO has now expanded to include year-round rehearsals and performances, and is presented by the Professional Performance Division in partnership with Berklee City Music®.

Develop your ear, play popular music, and learn to improvise with your friends. Enjoy two hours of jamming with other string players, faciliated by Mimi Rabson, Berklee associate professor and violinist. No previous experience in improvisation is necessary. During BREO jam sessions, you will:

  • play contemporary music (chosen by you and your fellow students);
  • learn all music by ear and receive instruction in improvisation;
  • explore real-time strategies for arranging and composing; and
  • jam with fellow string players interested in playing popular music.

This event is open to high school string players in the Greater Boston area. RSVP for a jam by sending an email to with the subject line "RSVP for BREO Jam." Contact us at 617-747-6276 or email for more information.

During the spring and fall, this is a weekly event occurring on Fridays from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at 1140 Boylston Street in room 2E.

FALL 2020 Schedule
Due to the current coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency, BREO has suspended all its in-person rehearsals. Meetings are still happening virtually on the following dates: 

  • September 11, 18, 25
  • October 9, 16, 23, 30
  • November 6, 13, 20
  • December 4, 11

Please email for information about joining a virtual BREO gathering.


Check out BREO in the press here, learn about the BREO's virtual ensemble performance here, and hear former BREO students in action: