Berklee Announces Creation of Dream Theater Scholarship

By 
Eugene Ahn
March 6, 2020
Press release
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Progressive music icons Dream Theater and Berklee College of Music announce the creation of the Dream Theater Scholarship Fund.

Roger Brown (left) and guitarist John Petrucci '86 (right) meet to announce the Dream Theater Scholarship.
Image by Ben Pu

Berklee and Dream Theater announce the creation of the Dream Theater Scholarship Fund. In celebration of the band’s 35th anniversary, Dream Theater and Berklee are creating a fund that will provide scholarship money to student musicians in need on an ongoing basis.

Recently, alumnus John Petrucci ’86, the band's guitarist, and his wife, Rena, who completed her Advanced Guitar Certificate through Berklee Online, visited Berklee to tour its production and music studios. This trip was the couple’s first time back to campus since their son Reny graduated in 2018. While there, they met with President Roger Brown and discussed the founding of the Dream Theater Scholarship. 

“Dream Theater has been a tremendous influence on the progressive metal scene, achieving worldwide success for their dedication to excellence in music,” said Brown. “The Dream Theater t-shirt has been the most popular item of apparel on our campus for years, and many students have chosen to come to Berklee as a result of the band's legacy. We are so appreciative of Dream Theater's support.”

Dream Theater was formed when John Petrucci and John Myung '86, bassist, were students at Berklee 35 years ago. Throughout their successful career, Berklee has continued to hold a special place in their lives. Current drummer Mike Mangini was a drum professor at Berklee for 11 years before leaving to join the band in 2010. 

In 2014, at Dream Theater’s Boston Opera House Concert, the band performed then-student Eren Başbuğ’s arrangements after Dream Theater keyboardist Jordan Rudess found Başbuğ’s interpretation of the group’s album Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence on YouTube. The band contacted Başbuğ and asked him to work on a new composition. This led to a performance of the piece, accompanied by Berklee's orchestra and concert choir, with Başbuğ conducting. The live album/video from the concert reached no. 1 on Billboard in November 2015.

Dream Theater hopes to continue its previous success with the Dream Theater Scholarship Fund. The fund will be headed by Berklee’s Mirek Vana, global development officer and executive producer, and Frank Solomon, Dream Theater's manager, who together have worked behind the scenes for six years to create the fund. Berklee and Dream Theater welcome contributions and support from the members of both communities to ensure the scholarship's success. 

For all prospective student inquiries, please contact the Admissions Office at admissions@berklee.edu. For all current student inquiries about the scholarship, please email financialaid@berklee.edu

For all inquiries and information, including how to donate to the scholarship fund, please email Vana at mvana@berklee.edu.

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