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First-hand accounts of the Berklee experience

Tag: “Javier Limón”

“Javier Limón”

Berklee Latino: Memorias

Escrito por Daniel Camargo, piano, alumno de Berklee Latino

image[5][LUNES 13 – enero – 2014]
Desde el inicio del programa (en la presentación de la facultad), me encontré sorprendido por la calidez y ánimo con los que me trataron los profesores incluso antes de presentarme con ellos.

Aunque el primer día no fue el más productivo, precisamente por ser el primer día, apenas entré a la primera clase y me sentí diferente; por diferente me refiero a que ya  sentía que el curso (por medio de los maestros) ya había dejado su “huella” en mí. Me di cuenta de que sí, tengo un nivel digamos aceptable, pero que  hay aspectos en los que estoy totalmente verde, empezando por: Improvisación. ¡Oh mi Dios! ¡Qué cosa fue tener que improvisar por primera vez! No tenía ni idea de qué hacer. Únicamente pasaban por mi mente los tres acordes que me había indicado Nando. Después de que nos informaron de la presentación de cierre que será (para el momento en que este documento haya sido terminado, obviamente algunos verbos deberán ser conjugados en pasado) el sábado (último día del curso) el profesor ya tenía un número preparado, incluso sin conocernos a nosotros los alumnos-músicos, así como desconociendo también nuestras habilidades en nuestros instrumentos. Fue asombroso ver cómo en cinco minutos de clase ya teníamos el primer tema en bastante avanzado progreso, faltándonos solamente, tal vez, orden pulir detalles.

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Berklee Latino: Seis Días Con Personas Inolvidables

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Cuando recibimos el correo de aceptación en el Programa Berklee Latino, la emoción invadió nuestros días hasta ese Lunes que todos hicimos fila para nuestro registro.

Hombres, mujeres, unos muy jóvenes, otros no tanto; pero todos con una misma ilusión y una pasión que nos identificaba y que brotaba a flor de piel: LA MÚSICA.

Durante los primeros días la emoción por aprender de nuestros maestros era común en cada compañero, poco a poco nos íbamos conociendo, especialmente cuando en las clases de armonía el maestro nos pasaba a improvisar, un término que yo creo que a todos nos quedó muy claro y nos hizo sentir más de una vez, nervios cada vez que nos pedían pasar al frente, por lo menos a mi si!!! 

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Students Share their Experience from the Berklee in Santo Domingo 2014 Program

Berklee on the Road (BOR) is one of the many programs produced by the Global Initiatives department at Berklee. This program provides students the chance to experience Berklee-like classes. The classes typically take place over a three- to five-day period. During these programs, students participate in lectures, labs, master classes, ensembles, workshops, and jam sessions during the day and have the opportunity to attend special events, panel discussions, and live performances in the evening.

Berklee on the Road (BOR) es uno de los muchos programas producidos por el departamento de Iniciativas Globales de Berklee. Este programa ofrece la oportunidad a estudiantes de experimentar el estilo de clases de Berklee. Típicamente los programas duran de tres a cinco días. Durante estos programas los estudiantes participarán en conferencias, laboratorios, ensambles, talleres y sesiones de improvisación durante el día, y tienen la oportunidad de asistir a eventos especiales, mesas redondas, y presentaciones en vivo en la noche.

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Middle Eastern Festival – A Journey to the Mediterranean Crossroads of Cultures by Ziga Pirnat

Last Monday, the Middle Eastern Festival took place at the BPC, joining artists from the Mediterranean region with students from all over the world performing music from their homelands.Those who attended the concert experienced an audible insight into a world of rich and diverse history, and took part in an incredible meeting of the sound of numerous civilizations that have lived and contributed to the unique cultural heritage of the Mediterranean.

Coming from a country on the Mediterranean, I have always felt a bewitching attraction to the music from the region. Listening to the Berklee Balkan choir and their throat singing pieces made last Monday a special experience, as I heard something that sounded so close to home.

However, I had never paid much attention to the intercultural connections and links between styles and musical traditions from the region that is culturally so colorful. I guess I had always thought that they were just too diverse and with just too many different influences to be compared and combined together. Therefore I was a bit skeptical at first about the Middle Eastern festival exploring connections between Flamenco, Arabic, Mediterranean, and Balkan music, also reflecting the journey Gypsies took from India to the Mediterranean. I couldn’t have been more mistaken.

The artistic director of Berklee in Valencia‘s Mediterranean Music Institute, Javier Limón, and the Middle Eastern Festival founder, Christiane Karam, did a great job. The primarily flamenco-themed festival titled “Flamenco Today: A Journey Through Andalusia” successfully incorporated and combined sounds from all across the Mediterranean into a beautiful and sound whole. It was at this point that I realized how interconnected this music was. After a mesmerizing three-hour ride through Siguiriya, Andalusian Wasla, Balkan Suite, Mediterranean Soundscape, Tango Flamenco, Peroche and Buleria, it became obvious to me how much all these musical styles have in common.

To think about it, it is really not that surprising. The Mediterranean has always been a place where many civilizations met, a place of migrations, wars, prosperity, large empires and – rich trade. The Greeks had colonies all around the Mediterranean; Alexander the Great established an enormous empire, as well as Romans. Since the destruction of the First Temple, Jewish people have been present all around the region and have left an indispensable contribution in its culture. Arabs dominated the Iberian Peninsula for centuries and their cultural influence was only reduced after the Reconquista, but never ceased to exist, which was also the case with the legacy of the Sephardim after their expulsion in 1492. For centuries, the Ottoman Empire stretched far north into the Balkans, bringing its own cultural contribution and also serving as an intermediary of Arab culture. Gypsies brought their own sound from India and by migrating, they dispersed it through the entire area. The Mediterranean was indeed a crossroads of cultures, where many civilizations have lived or travelled through and each left unique tracks behind them.

The unmatched cultural diversity and heritage of this place makes another argument, why it is so important for Berklee to be present in the region. The words of Sissy Castrogiovanni, a current student of Global Studies at the Berklee Valencia campus, illustrate that vividly: “a great place. Beautiful music, beautiful people.” Simply said, but true.

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