As part of its second annual Words and Music Festival, the Berklee Composition Department is sponsoring an evening of Student Songwriting Competition winners in five categories: art song, theater song, jazz song, contemporary song, and a words and music challenge. The evening will kick off with a gala performance of William Walton’s Façade, performed by Berklee faculty members, and conclude with performances by our Student Songwriting Competition winners.
The Professional Writing and Music Technology Division Awards Concert is a musical celebration of student compositions. The concert features award-winning student compositions from the division’s eight departments: Film Scoring, Jazz Composition, Harmony, Contemporary Writing and Production, Electronic Production and Design, Composition, Songwriting, and Music Production and Engineering. This eclectic annual event includes film scores as well as pieces for orchestra, jazz band, electronics, and rock band. The compositions are in a variety of styles including jazz, singer-songwriter, contemporary, classical, and Latin.
Grammy Award-winning pianist Danilo Pérez leads Berklee Global jazz Institute (BGJI) students and faculty in the annual Global Jazz Summit. Past performers have included BGJI faculty members Joe Lovano, Teri Lyne Carrington, John Patitucci, and George Garzone, and special guests Wayne Shorter, Adam Cruz, and Brian Blade. Students have performed at the Newport Jazz Festival, the Blue Note Jazz Club, the Montreal Jazz Festival, and the Kennedy Center.
The BGJI is designed to help instrumentalists and vocalists with unique talent and wide-ranging musical interests achieve their artistic goals through an experiential and interdisciplinary approach. Developing artists who seek to evolve to the highest levels—as both musicians and human beings—find a true home in the BGJI environment, which provides both the support and range of challenges necessary for sustained creative growth.
Each semester, between 120 and 180 voice students audition for the opportunity to be cast in Singers Night, one of the Voice Department's premiere shows. Join us for this high-energy concert featuring the students who were chosen during this process performing solo and in small groups.
One of today's most remarkable songwriters, José González pulls from folk, pop, and an array of world music traditions to build songs that are powerful, haunting, and intimate. González’s crystal-clear voice and vibrant, classically inspired guitar playing are paired with orchestra arrangements by yMusic, a group of New York City instrumentalists whose virtuosic execution has attracted the attention of high-profile collaborators such as Beck, Ben Folds, the National’s Bryce Dessner, and others. This special concert will feature González and yMusic playing unique chamber ensemble arrangements and a special performance by yMusic.
This annual performance celebrates Berklee's abundant international student population, proving that music is truly a cultural bridge. Students from around the globe and from the United States will perform a wide variety of traditional folk music. There will be vibrant choreography, colorful clothing, and in some cases rarely seen instruments from students' homelands. The show will feature special guest and Grammy winner Arto Tuncboyaciyan, an Armenian American avant-garde folk artist who had appeared on over 200 records in Europe before coming to the United States. Once here, he went on to work with numerous jazz legends including Chet Baker, Mark Johnson, Al Di Meola, and Joe Zawinul, and he has had a semi-regular stint with Paul Winter and the Earth Band.
Drummer/composer/bandleader Antonio Sanchez '97 has had landmark years in both 2014 and 2015. The Berklee alumnus has become one of the most acclaimed and in-demand drummers of his generation. Nominated for a Golden Globe and a British Academy of Film and Television Arts Award, and the recipient of several awards including four Grammys, Sanchez has released a remarkable work titled The Meridian Suite. He will perform this work with his exemplary band, Migration, which includes Seamus Blake on sax, John Escreet on piano, Matt Brewer on bass, and Thana Alexa on vocals.
Sanchez has cemented his place at the forefront of modern jazz by breaking boundaries both as a drummer and as a composer. His performances are exciting, unique, and riveting to watch.
This concert will feature two ensembles that are under the artistic direction of Terence Blanchard, a visiting scholar in jazz composition at Berklee, and are organized and rehearsed by Shamie Royston, an assistant professor in the Jazz Composition Department. Both ensembles have focused on composition and performance techniques given by Blanchard and Royston since the beginning of the fall semester. As many of the students are not composition majors, they have been challenged to think and write as true composers and to produce new musical ideas within their own performance skills. This concert is a snapshot of their work in progress and features the Terence Blanchard XTet and Jazz in Film Ensemble with Blanchard himself as the special guest.
Bob Dylan’s career began in the early 1960s with songs that chronicled the significant social issues of the time. He was inspired by traditional folk music and brought his piercing and poetic lyrics to songs such as "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall” and “Like a Rolling Stone,” which reflected the tension and unrest of the civil rights and anti-war movements. His songs of protest and turmoil spoke to an entire generation and turned Dylan into a cultural and political icon who played to sold-out concert halls around the world. Dylan was the voice of his generation and electrified the world when he moved to a harder-edged style at Newport in 1965.
Dylan's accolades are many. He was Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988; Rolling Stone magazine has named "Like a Rolling Stone" the No. 1 song of all time; and Dylan has 12 other songs on the magazine's list of the Top 500. Over more than four decades, Dylan has produced 500 songs and more than 40 albums.
At this concert, Berklee students and faculty will pay tribute to Dylan’s prolific career by performing new arrangements of Dylan’s most memorable and influential songs.
Tom Appleman leads a group of faculty, students, and outside professionals in a performance of Elton John’s legendary album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. The album is about giving up a life of opulence for one of simplicity in a rural setting. Hits include “Bennie and the Jets,” “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting,” “Candle in the Wind,” and the title cut. Appleman, an assistant professor in the Bass Department, will be singing and playing piano, joined by bass student Jonathan Elyashiv.