Harmony Faculty

Kris Adams

Professor, Harmony
Also affiliated with: Berklee Online (available courses), Ensemble, Voice
kadams@berklee.edu | 617 747-8447

Vocalist Kris Adams is the author of Sing Your Way Through Theory: A Music Theory Workbook For The Contemporary Singer. She has shared the stage with many accomplished musicians, including Joe Lovano, Billy Drummond, Harvie S, and Michelle Hendricks.

Kevin Bleau

Associate Professor, Harmony
kbleau@berklee.edu | 617 747-8603

"Arrangers tell performers how to play by the marks they write on the page, so I tell my students to embrace that power. Be clear. Be specific. And insist that performers follow your instructions."

Eric Byers

Assistant Professor, Harmony
ebyers@berklee.edu | 617 747-2834

"I'm a strong believer in process; you learn by doing. I don't really think you can learn much about any art form without actually getting your hands dirty."

Charles Cassara

Professor, Harmony
ccassara@berklee.edu | 617 747-8137

"Technology may be able to make the material more visual and more interesting, or you can gather information quicker but the basic bottom line is, even without technology, you still have to be able to tell me something about music that I can come away with."

Jeff Claassen

Assistant Professor, Harmony
jclaassen@berklee.edu | 617 747-8076

"My experiences gigging are such a wide range, and I like sharing that with students. Even if it’s talking about playing a gig over the weekend where the music was so horribly notated that I couldn’t read it. I explain, ‘Learn to notate this stuff; otherwise, you’re going to get a horrible performance.’"

Suzanne M. Clark

Associate Professor, Harmony
sclark@berklee.edu | 617 747-8687

"I want my students to develop their own ear and make connections between what they hear outside of class and what goes on inside class."

Jeff D'Antona

Assistant Professor, Harmony
jdantona@berklee.edu | 617 747-6516

"I want students to be better prepared for a career as a musician than when they came into the class. I want them to gain a solid foundation in theoretical concepts that will serve them in their careers, wherever their path takes them."

Winnie Dahlgren

Associate Professor, Harmony
wdahlgren@berklee.edu | 617 747-2829

"It's about learning the rules, and once you do, you understand how you can then go out and break the rules."

Randy Felts

Associate Professor, Harmony
rfelts@berklee.edu | 617 747-8169

"At the beginning of the semester I often say how great it is to be in a room with a bunch of other 'crazy people' who are as much infected by the music bug as I am."

Danny Harrington

Professor, Harmony

"Initially everybody's afraid of making mistakes. Everybody wants to sound perfect, but improvisation is an imperfect art."

David Harris

Assistant Professor, Harmony
dbharris@berklee.edu | 617 747-6027

"You need to work very hard to be a successful musician your whole life, but if you really love it, it's hard work that you don't mind doing."

Mitch Haupers

Professor, Harmony
mhaupers@berklee.edu | 617 747-8212

"I really believe that people are self-motivated already; you've just got to free that up."

Thomas Hojnacki

Assistant Chair, Harmony
thojnacki@berklee.edu | 617 747-8438

"My whole career as a professional musician has been about playing diverse styles of music. I've been fortunate enough to have the kind of training that lets me move pretty easily from one kind of style and performing group to another. So when I teach harmony, I try to show how much of the harmonic structure of music is the same from one style to another. The things that differentiate styles are often superficial."

Lucy Holstedt

Professor, Harmony
lholstedt@berklee.edu | 617 747-8231

"I like to be spontaneous and creative in class. For instance, I ask my students to bring in recordings they like, and I'll develop a lesson from their music right on the spot."

David Johnson

Professor, Harmony
djohnson@berklee.edu | 617 747-8238

Darrell Katz

Professor, Harmony
dkatz@berklee.edu | 617 747-8242

"I certainly want my students to be accurate and precise. I routinely tell them, 'If you want someone to play what you put on the page, you have to put what you meant. It's got to be right.'"

Steven Kirby

Associate Professor, Harmony
skirby@berklee.edu | 617 747-8604

"I do what I can to help the students connect to the information so that they start using it as soon as possible. "

Rick Kress

Associate Professor, Harmony
rkress@berklee.edu | 617 747-8413

"You could have all the technique in the world, but whatever you're going to do, figure out what it is and what kind of impression you want to make."

Alizon Lissance

Associate Professor, Harmony
Also affiliated with: Berklee Online (available courses)
alissance@berklee.edu | 617 747-8496

"I want my students to leave my classes with a heightened awareness of the inner workings of music, an embracing of the left-brain stuff, a desire to explore harmony and color. For the writers it's a no-brainer. There are a lot more singers here at Berklee now, and I really encourage them to play the piano. I hope my students come away with an openness to use the tools that we give them in their own writing and arranging."

Craig Macrae

Associate Professor, Harmony
cmacrae@berklee.edu | 617 747-8459

"One thing that comes up a lot in my teaching is that the process of learning to make music is counterintuitive. Careful practice organizes your nervous system in a way that allows you to communicate with your instrument, so the more discipline you use in preparation, the more expressive you will sound."

Rick McLaughlin

Assistant Professor, Harmony

"When somebody takes a solo, we have a kind of conversation, mutually exploring new musical places."

Joseph Mulholland

Professor, Harmony
Also affiliated with: Berklee Online (available courses)

"The essence of the Harmony Department is music fundamentals as they play out in notation, chord progression, melody, and bass lines. In any other school, they call it theory. And it is theory, but it's much more practical than an ordinary theory class would be. We teach students to take apart the music they listen to and understand how it's put together. They take the music apart like a watch, see what the pieces are and what they're doing. Hopefully, the students learn from that and use that knowledge to create their own music, a watch of their own—but one that still runs."

Randy Pingrey

Assistant Professor, Harmony
rpingrey@berklee.edu | 617 747-6437

"Harmony isn’t a type of musical Sudoku puzzle; it’s a living, breathing thing that you can build a career and a life around."

Steve Rochinski

Professor, Harmony
Also affiliated with: Berklee Online (available courses)
srochinski@berklee.edu | 617 747-8335

"There are so many people in the world who would love to be here, but can't. So the online school fills that vacuum. I teach a couple sections of the Harmony class online. The students are generally older, quite bright and experienced, but it runs the entire spectrum of beginners who don't know a quarter note from a 25-cent piece to people who are working professional musicians but who never had a lot of the basic foundations of harmony as they were coming up. The online school helps to bridge that gap."

George Russell Jr.

Chair, Harmony
grussell@berklee.edu | 617 747-2833

"Music is harmony and melody. It's like a vocabulary. Without a vocabulary, it's difficult to speak. You can do it, but it sounds like you don't know what you're saying. As a player myself, knowing harmonic theory gives me a lot of security."

Pages