Armand Qualliotine

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"The thing that I enjoy most about Berklee is its diversity. There are students from all over the world here. I can ask them questions about their home countries, their national music, so it's stimulating for me."

"Berklee is a really practical college. Most of the students come in and they know what they want, and so they're motivated to go after that particular field. It's a mission of the college to provide not just an abstract learning experience, but a practical learning experience as well. There is a success rate here. I've had students go to Tufts and Yale and all kinds of really high-end schools for graduate school. Or they graduate and they get a job in whatever field it is they're interested in."

"I'm known as a very demanding professor, and that word has spread around the school, so the students who really want to learn take my classes. I'm very aggressive and demanding, and this is a complete act, a show, that I put on to get the students' attention. I'm a really laid back kind of guy, and the students figure that out as they get to know me throughout the semester. So they eventually see I'm hard on them because I want them to do well. I have a lot of students who keep on coming back to my classes; my classes are always filled."

"On the first day of class, I always ask students what their majors are. If the student is a business major or a music education major or something other than composition or film scoring, I tell them that composition is not necessarily going to be a part of everyday life, but it won't hurt their musical education. It will only enhance it, because they'll have a deeper understanding of how music works. And I always tell my anecdotal stories about business majors who took and liked my classes, and now they are working for Snoop Dogg, or they're in France writing for television shows and making more money than I'll ever see. I tell these success stories a lot because they're all true. Some students work hard and become successful early, and I'm really happy for them, and happy that what I did enabled them to get the kind of gig that they have."

Career Highlights
  • B.M., Hartt School of Music
  • M.A., State University of New York - Stony Brook
  • M.F.A., Ph.D., Brandeis University
  • Postdoctoral studies at Harvard University with Pierre Boulez and Milton Babbitt
  • Received first prize in the Boston's ISCM composition competition; commissions from Harvard's Fromm Music Foundation, the Stony Brook Contemporary Chamber Players, and the Paul Jacobs Commission for orchestral composition from the Tanglewood Festival Orchestra; and a 1988 Guggenheim Fellowship
  • Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters