Arnold Friedman

Arnold Friedman has taught at Berklee for 14 years and chaired the Composition Department from 2012 to 2016. He has taught at the University of North Texas, where he directed the NOVA Ensemble, and Western Oregon University. His music has been performed throughout the U.S. and in Italy. He has performed in the cello sections of the Dallas Opera Orchestra and the Rhode Island Philharmonic as well as with Dinosaur Annex and Notariotous. Friedman writes and performs in the Melde and Friedman Bass-Cello Duo.

  • Career Highlights
    • Former faculty member at the University of North Texas and Western Oregon University
    • Cellist with the Dallas Opera Orchestra, Honolulu Symphony, and Rhode Island Philharmonic
    • Coproducer, Marty Studios
    • Composition commissions from the Cleveland Duo and James Umble, ExtensionWorks, and the University of North Texas Dance Department
    • Master classes and lectures at the University of Hawaii, Tufts University, and Bowling Green State University
    • Performance with Melde and Friedman Bass-Cello Duo, Dallas Opera Orchestra, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Dinosaur Annex, and Calumet Quintet
    • Compositions performed by Centro Sperimentale Musicale per Infanzia in Rome, Italy; Esterhazy String Quartet; and Cleveland Duo and James Umble
    • Composition studies with Martin Mailman, Larry Austin, and William Bolcom
    • Cello studies with Carter Enyeart, Leslie Parnas, Nina de Verich, Zara Nelsova, Jerome Jelinek, and John Ehrlich
  • Education
    • B.M., Drake University
    • M.M., University of Michigan
    • D.M.A., University of North Texas

In Their Own Words

"What's great about Berklee is everyone comes from very different backgrounds and very different points of view. At Berklee we have a whole world of music to share with one another. My goal is to provide tools to share it and understand it more and more clearly."

"I like to create a cooperative atmosphere in the classroom. Very often I'll have students break off in small groups and work with one another. I enjoy watching the relationships grow among these students who were total strangers. By the end of the course, they'll be collaborating on songs or forming bands together. I encourage students to think about the connections they make with each other because that is one of the most important things that they get out of being at Berklee."

"I want everyone, my students AND myself, to come away from every course loving and comprehending a broader spectrum of music than when we started. My goal is to provide tools to share it and understand it more and more clearly."

"Everything that I teach should have utility in the real world. Counterpoint students might think, 'What do parallel fifths have to do with getting a gig?' And I admit, some of what we teach may seem far from the day-to-day world of the performer, the producer. But I think that kind of discipline—creating in a small box—has tremendous value for everyone. I love to bring in contemporary music that exemplifies principles that superficially seem applicable to music in the 1700s."

"As a composer and performer, I use everything I teach every single day. The ideas of counterpoint, melody, harmony, rhythm, orchestration, tone color, and composition apply to everything, even though the "rules" may change from style to style."

Watch