Berklee Today

Faculty Notes

  Mitch Benoff's Meteor
  Associate Professor Mitch Benoff's Athens Olympic Meteor
  Matt Barrett

Music Production and Engineering Professor Mitch Benoff designed the award-winning Athens Olympic Meteor, a light installation that produced a series of light streaks that moved at 250 mph up Lycabettus Hill in Athens, Greece. Benoff's installation was visible citywide during the 2004 Olympic Games.

The Thaddeus Hogarth Band, led by Assistant Professor of Guitar Thaddeus Hogarth, was selected to help launch the new Bose Personalized Amplification System product line. The band will be one of 24 acts representing Bose in live music venues nationwide.

Associate Professor of Film Scoring Sheldon Mirowitz completed the score for The Woodcutter, a film staring Danny Glover, Ron Perlman, Linda Hamilton, and David Strathairn. He also received a Primetime Emmy nomination for his work on The Nazi Officer's Wife, a TV movie that aired on A&E.

Associate Professor of Music Business/Management Jerry Wasserman is a candidate for the Massachusetts State Senate. He is campaigning for increased state funding for public education, assistance for small businesses and entrepreneurs, universal health care, and incentives for environmentally friendly buildings and transportation. The final election will take place November 2.

Associate Professor of Professional Music Tom Stein was the bandleader for 22 gigs during the week of the Democratic National Convention in Boston. He contracted bands that included 25 fellow faculty members.

Associate Professor of Voice Lawrence Watson's 13-piece group, Workforce 2000, performed for over 10,000 people at the kickoff event for the Democratic National Convention.

On a recent episode of MTV's Cribs, Maroon 5 guitarist James Valentine showed viewers his favorite guitar book, The Guitarist's Guide to Composing and Improvising, by Professor Jon Damian. Valentine is a former student of Berklee's Summer Sessions. Additionally, Damian recently performed with the Boston Pops Orchestra under conductor John Williams along with Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg, for Film Night at Tanglewood.

  Damian and Chapman
  Professor Jon Damian (left) presents retired guitar professor Charles Chapman with the 2004 Buddy System Award.
  Donna Chapman

Retired faculty member Charles Chapman received the 2004 Buddy System Award from Jon Damian, faculty advisor and founder of the General Association of Really Astute Guitar Enthusiasts (GARAGE) guitar club. Chapman was cited for his contributions as a performer and clinician for the Buddy System Recital Series. The club's spring GARAGE sale raised $700 for the award.

Professor of Jazz Composition Greg Hopkins received three positive reviews in the May issue of Down Beat for his big-band CD Okavongo, his quintet CD Quintology, and for Tre Corda, a trio outing led by pianist Tim Ray with Associate Professor Eugene Friesen playing cello and Hopkins playing trumpet.

Assistant Professor of General Education Michael Heyman traveled to India, where he continued his research for an anthology of Indian literary nonsense. The book, showcasing the rich tradition of Indian literary nonsense and its different manifestations in India, is expected to come out at the end of 2005. Heyman also gave lectures at Delhi University and at the British Council in Chennai.

Drs. Peggy Codding and Suzanne Hanser, from the Music Therapy Department, were invited to serve as faculty for the International Music Therapy Symposium hosted by the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing China this past March.

Professor Neil Olmstead gave a solo piano recital and lecture entitled "The Influence of French Impressionist Music on American Jazz" in the Sala dei Giganti (Hall of Giants) at the University of Padua in Italy.

Guitar Instructor Chris Buono is a freelancer for Guitar One magazine, and his book Jazz Lead Guitar Solos was released by Alfred Publishing. He also played on the Lava Atlantic release from Tony C. and the Truth and on the debut solo CD from drummer Rodney Holmes.

Assistant Professor of General Education Amy Merrill's play Driving on the Left Side: A Reggae Play, was performed at the Producers' Club II theater in New York City in July. The production's original reggae music was also released on CD.

Percussion Instructor Sergio Bellotti taught clinics and performed at the Milano Drum Festival in Italy. He also played alongside faculty drummer Mike Mangini at the Cape Breton International Drum Festival.

Assistant Professor of Ear Training Gaye Tolan Hatfield was awarded the Level One Certificate from the Institute for Contemporary Commercial Music at Shenandoah University in Winchester, Virginia.

Associate Professor of Bass Joe Santerre played on CDs by Piano Instructor Ross Ramsay and award-winning composer Anne DiSanto. He is currently working on his next solo CD, featuring his compositions for the six-string electric bass.

Assistant Professor of Piano Dave Limina appeared on the albums Now My Soul and I Feel Like Goin' On by Ronnie Earl & The Broadcasters and played with Assistant Professor Kevin Barry on Lori McKenna's latest album, Bittertown.

Assistant Professor of Guitar Eric Johnson's new CD Herbie Nichols, Volume 1 has received enthusiastic reviews from the All Music Guide and JazzTimes. Visit

Associate Professor of Harmony Kris Adams recently traveled to S?o Paulo, Brazil, to study samba vocalists and northeast Brazilian rhythms. While there, she studied with Brazilian singer Monica Salmaso.

Assistant Professor of Music Business/Management Sky Traughber signed a book deal with Schirmer Books in New York.

Professor of General Education Peter Gardner was a consultant for the formation of the Hellenic American University, an American-style university in Athens, Greece, that will offer an MBA degree in public relations, sports marketing, and health care management.

Professor Bruno Raberg held a release concert for his new CD, Chrysalis, on September 29. The album features Berklee faculty members Mick Goodrick, Jeff Galindo, and Marcello Pellitteri, as well as alumni Donny McCaslin '88 and Anders Boström '89.

Associate Professor of Film Scoring Richard Davis served as a moderator on a film scoring panel at the Nashville Film Festival. Joining Davis onstage was actor Patrick Swayze and his wife, Lisa Niemi, as well as composer Stacey Widelitz.

Assistant Professor of Percussion Ricardo Monzon's Jazz for Kids concert at the Cape Cod Jazz Festival featured Associate Professor of Harmony Joe Mulholland.

Associate Professor of Guitar Dan Bowden authored the book Electric Blues Guitar Workout for Mel Bay Publications.

Guitarist and Assistant Professor of Contemporary Writing and Production David Howard performed and taught in Milan and Calabria, Italy last summer.

Composition Chair Gregory Fritze was selected as a member of the Academia de la Musica Valenciana, Spain, and had two of his compositions performed at the International Tuba and Euphonium Association convention in Budapest, Hungary.