Berklee Today

Berklee Beat: Berklee's Helping Hands

Bryan Edward Oliver Memorial Scholarship Established

Vibist Gary Burton and pianist Makoto Ozone perform at the April 2 benefit concert hosted by the board of visitors.

Photo by Justing Knight

A "messenger of truth" is how Woodwinds Department Assistant Professor Harry Skoler remembers the late Bryan Oliver. Skoler was in awe of the talent he saw in Oliver, a Berklee student who passed away last fall.

Oliver was an arranger, composer, vocalist, and saxophonist of unusual skill. "The level of his artistry was as high as any I have ever seen," said Skoler. "Bryan really put his music out there, beyond the boundaries. He was a rare individual who deeply affected many of us. I wanted him to be remembered at Berklee, so I proposed the establishment of the Bryan Edward Oliver Memorial Scholarship," said Skoler. "This will honor Oliver's extraordinary talent." Call (617) 747-2569 for information on how to contribute to this scholarship fund.


Fidelity Foundation Invests in Pianos

The Fidelity Foundation made a gift to Berklee that allows the college to purchase three concert grand pianos for use in the Berklee Performance Center, David Friend Recital Hall, and Lawrence and Alma Berk Recital Hall. After guitar, piano is the second most popular principal instrument at Berklee. There are nearly 550 Berklee students who declare piano as their principal instrument.

Assistant Vice President Marjorie O'Malley noted, "We are deeply grateful to the Fidelity Foundation for investing in the college and the outstanding pianists who will now have the opportunity to perform on the finest pianos in each of our most used performance spaces. The pianos will be greatly appreciated by our faculty, students, and visiting artists for years to come."


On April 11, Colette Delerue (center) presented film scoring scholarship awards to Elik Alvarez (left) and Jae Jin Lee. Mrs. Delerue established the Georges Delerue Memorial Scholarship Fund in honor of her late husband, a legendary film composer.

Photo by Bob Kramer

Board of Visitors Host Fundraiser

Berklee's board of visitors hosted a benefit concert on April 2, featuring Berklee executive vice president and five-time Grammy Award winner Gary Burton in a duo setting with famed jazz pianist and composer Makoto Ozone '83. Over 70 guests paid $100 each to hear the pair perform.

The event was sponsored by Aramark Food Service. Funds raised will be used to expand Berklee's outreach programs to schools in communities around eastern Massachusetts. In particular, the proceeds will provide for a band bus, equipment, and instruments for use in these traveling shows.


Rod and Joan Nordell Establish Fund

Trustee emeritus Roderick Nordell and his wife Joan established an endowed fund at Berklee. Nordell served as a Berklee trustee for 26 years. He has been a trustee emeritus since his retirement from the board in 1996. Nordell's association with Berklee began with founders Lawrence and Alma Berk while Nordell worked at the Christian Science Monitor.

Nordell (a drummer) served with distinction on Berklee's Education Committee at a time of expansion in course offerings when Berklee became a college. Rod and Joan Nordell were also frequent hosts for international students studying at Berklee.

The Nordells established this fund to support the new Office of Experiential Learning, which matches Berklee students with companies seeking interns. In addition to providing course credit for their efforts, the program enables students to gain valuable first-hand work experience while still in school.


Roland Scholarship

Mr. Ikutaro Kakehashi, founder and CEO of the Roland Corporation, recently made a gift to the Roland Endowed Scholarship Fund that he established. Kakehashi's gift brings the fund total to over $125,000. The fund provides scholarship support for new or continuing students from Japan studying music synthesis at Berklee.

In addition, Kakehashi donated 20 VS-1680 HD digital studio workstations to be used at Berklee's new practice facility on Fordham Road in Brighton. These systems will be placed in some practice rooms to allow personal multitrack recording for students. Some systems will also be added to MP&E teaching rooms for classroom demonstrations. The workstations enable students to record up to 16 tracks, edit their work, and mix down with digital effects to stereo master tracks.

Kakehashi formed Roland Corporation in 1972 and has made his company a leader in the music products industry. David Mash, vice president of Information Technology stated, "Kakehashi is a brilliant leader with an amazing vision and the ability to make that vision a reality. He is a strong supporter of music and education and we are proud that he believes in our mission and our vision of the future of music education."


D'Addario and Fender Support Summer Guitar Sessions

The D'Addario Foundation for the Performing Arts made its first gift to the college to support Berklee's Summer Guitar Sessions. John and James D'Addario, founders of J. D'Addario & Company, which manufactures musical instrument strings and accessories, recognized a need to assist members of the musical community showcase their talents. They created the foundation to support performance, music education, festivals, symposiums, and research activities.

Larry Baione, Berklee's Guitar Department chair, noted, "This is an outstanding commitment by the D'Addario Foundation. We are delighted that their gift will make guitar instruction available to young people this summer. It is my pleasure to welcome them into the Berklee community."

Fender Musical Instruments Corporation continues to provide scholarships for hundreds of students seeking to attend the Summer Guitar Sessions as they have since 1992. The week-long guitar program offers participants practical playing experience through classes, clinics, and performance activities geared toward contemporary guitar styles. "Fender has been a long-standing supporter of Berklee and the students seeking to improve their guitar playing skills," said Marjorie O'Malley. "We are deeply appreciative of their commitment to the program."


BMI Supports Film Scoring Students

BMI's Film and Television Division recently made a gift to provide scholarship support for an outstanding Film Scoring major. BMI, a broadcast music and performing rights organization, has made this gift for the second time in two years.

Doreen Ringer-Ross, vice president for film and television relations at BMI, has added a new dimension to this partnership. Each year, she arranges for one of BMI's prominent composers to visit Berklee and conduct a master class for film scoring students. Two years ago, Michael Kamen came for a discussion of his work and emerging trends in technology. Most recently, Alan Menken spoke about writing for an animated musical and how to build a successful career composing for film and television.

Don Wilkins, chairman of Berklee's Film Scoring Department stated; "We are very grateful to BMI for the significant financial support this scholarship provides to our most talented and deserving students. The master classes given by these composers are highlights for our students each year."


Ziljian Equips Practice Rooms

The Avedis Zildjian Company made a recent donation of Zildjian cymbals to Berklee College of Music. This gift, valued at close to $15,000, enabled Berklee's Percussion Department to set up new drum sets in ensemble rooms throughout the college. Presently, there are 400 percussion principals at Berklee. The demand for high-quality gear to accommodate them is significant.

The Avedis Zildjian Company celebrated its 375th anniversary at the Berklee Performance Center last fall. The oldest continuously operating company in the U.S., Zildjian has been a strong supporter of Berklee students for decades. Armand Zildjian, former Zildjian president, served with distinction for many years on Berklee's board of trustees. His daughter Craigie Zildjian, the company's current CEO, is now a trustee and continues the company's generous support for Berklee students.