Berklee Blogs

First-hand accounts of the Berklee experience

Tag: Greg Badolato (Page 1 of 2)

Greg Badolato

When LA and NYC Came to Valencia – Re:Tool 2012

2012retoolgroup1cropBy: Jason Camelio, director of international programs

There was a new sound echoing in the halls of the Berklee Valencia campus this weekend. First you felt the kick. Then you heard the snare. The bass hit you in the your gut and made you want to move. Rhymes flew by at light speed with tasty turntable fills and horn and synth lines filling the air. As you peeked through the doorway of B-81, Needle-Juice, Raydar, The One and Kai are “holding forth” in an epic scene that brings world class producers, DJ, MCs, composers, electronic artists together from Los Angeles, New York and Boston to teach a group of students from 13 countries to learn the craft of utilizing music technology in production and live performance.

For me, this is a long time coming. I have had the amazing fortune of knowing, listening to, learning from and performing with these amazing teachers and musicians. Having traveled with them separately to many places around the world, I thought it would be incredibly hip to bring them all together for the first time at the new campus in Valencia, Spain. Let me introduce this amazing crew of the 2012 Re:Tool program.

• Professor of Music Production and Engineering Stephen Webber (aka Needle Juice)
• Berklee Alum, Faculty Member in the Ensemble and Songwriter Departments and Artist in New York City Brian Ellis (aka Raydar)
• Berklee Alum, Assistant Professor of Electronic Production and Design Kai Turnbull
• Grammy Award Winner Producer, Berklee Alum and Artist based in Los Angeles Dawaun Parker (aka The One)
2012retooldemoThe experience levels of the students in the program have run the gamut for those just beginning to approach the world of technology in music to those that are working a DJs and electronic musicians. The students have been treated to an amazing series of lectures, master classes and a faculty showcase. The topics ranged from Listen Like a Producer to the Art of the DJ to production master classes where the faculty members listen too and critiqued student works. Stephen Webber also show a pre-pre-premiere of his truly innovative Stylus Symphony. Additionally, the attendees had the chance to get their hands dirty with some amazing new gear — both analogue and digital.  Huge thanks goes to Stephen for working closely with Berklee Alum Tony Lamond and everyone at Numark-Alesis-Akai for sponsoring the program.

2012retoolgroup2

Raydar Ellis, Stephen Webber, Dawaun Parker, Jason Camelio, Carlos Ballester, Greg Badolato and Kai Turnbull (not in picture Sam Skau) - 2012 Re:Tool Crew.

Re:Tool is the last in the series of 4 programs produced by the Office of International Programs with the help of our colleagues in the Office of Summer Programs at the new campus in Valencia this summer. Most gracious thanks to all of the faculty members, artists and staff members that supported this event. It has been an amazingly collaborative experience.

Keep your eyes open for more International Programs coming up later this summer, fall and next spring. A few things are on the books, including Hong Kong, Helsinki and Sao Paulo. As detailed come available, we will blast them out. Be sure to connect with is on Facebook.”

Improvising Global Connections

By Jason Camelio, director of international programs.

Art of Improvisation Global Connection

Lollapalooza - Brazil award winner Sarah Messias and Ipshita Roy from India hang with Rick Peckham after the Art of Improvisation afternoon master class.

The afternoon session at the end of the first day of the Art of Improvisation: Blues and Jazz program was coming to an end. As the room began to clear an oddly familiar — in the land of Berklee — event took place. Two young women were having a discussion with assistant chair of the guitar department, Rick Peckham. This is fairly common. It gets interesting when you learn about the two talented musicians speaking with Rick.

First, we have a young Brazilian Blues vocalist and harp player Sarah Messias. Sarah is the winner of the 2012 Lollapalooza – Brazil Scholarship. The award affords her the chance to attend the Art of Improvisation program at no cost! Her peer is also a talented young Blues vocalist from India, Ipshita Roy. Both musicians are enjoying some level of musical success in their home countries. Both have traveled a great distance to the new campus in Valencia to make this connection.

For some, this would be the makings a fine Odd Couples sequel. But, for those of us at Berklee it is just another day in the classroom. The exceptions being that these two musicians totally ROCKED it during the afternoon master class. 

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Schooled in Groove

To many musicians, the groove is the basis of all that we do. It’s the feel; the groove moves us. As we wrapped up the last day of the Berklee Groove School program at the new campus in Valencia, the groove was in full effect.

2012 groove school dance

George Russell, Jr. wants you to feel the groove. So, get up and dance!

I do not think the students had any idea what pianist, composer and professor of harmony at Berklee George Russell, Jr. had in mind when he asked the group to get up out of their chairs and start to get their bodies in motion. The result put the icing on the cake of this 4-day program by making the students do what they had been studying over the long weekend. Shake it, baby! 

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A View from the Summit

By Jason Camelio, Director of International Programs

There are many sites to see in Valencia. Depending on where you stand your perspective can be dramatically altered. From the bridges spanning the Palau de les Arts, you see the expanse of truly vivid imaginations. It is compositional in nature. Fluid. Impressive and yet subtle with a filigree of detail juxtaposed with complex imagery. This imagery can also describe the incredible group of creative and inspired minds holding court at the 2012 Berklee International Network Summit.

2012 Summit Guests

2012 Berklee International Summit Guests - 60 Attendees from, 24 institutions and organizations in 20 countries.

As I looked across Sala A, I saw individuals with a deep passion for the craft and art of music and music education. They are an inspirational organization that is reflective of what my teachers and mentors at Berklee have shared with me of Lawrence Berk and those keeping to his ideals.

At the Summit, we set out to meet three goals.  Our partners had the opportunity to be introduced to the new vice president of global initiatives Guillermo Cisneros. This is the first Summit Guillermo has presided over. Equally important, we introduced our partners to the new campus at the Palau. Finally, by incorporating a number of new institutions and organizations with whom Berklee has been working over the past few years at the Summit, we worked to expand the potential of this truly dynamic global organization.

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Generosity – Dominican-Style

By: Jason Camelio, Director of International Programs

As the last finalist walked from the recital hall at the National Theater in Santo Domingo, we on the audition panel turned to one another and shared a few smiles. On one hand, the easy part was done. Over the past day and a half we had auditioned 30+ talented young musicians that had been selected as finalists for the 2012 Michel Camilo Scholarship. The hard part was about to begin. We now had to select the one candidate to receive the presidential scholarship generously donated by Michel.

We had heard fantastic auditions covering various styles. From exceptional performances of classical piano repertoire, to stellar Jazz and Blues to even transcriptions of Michel’s work — the overall quality showcased made it clear that these young musicians are not messing around. Much of what they have accomplished is due to their individual commitment to music study.  This is helped along my high level music education at places like the National Conservatory — where Michel studied.

The Conservatory now has a strong contemporary music program focusing on the Jazz tradition. One of the program directors and faculty is a Berklee alum Javier Vargas. Javier was extremely proud to have a number of his students selected as finalists for the competition.

2012 Michel Camilo Award Finalists

2012 Michel Camilo Award Finalists

Director of scholarships Tod Oliviere, assistant vice president for international program Greg Badolato, Michel and I began our deliberations. Going back through the detailed notes we had taken from the auditions and interviews, names began to emerge. As with many awarding situations, Tod knew that there were many potential recipients.

In the end, one performance stood out. A student from the Conservatory and an exceptional young guitarist, Roger De La Rosa. In this moment, his life changed thanks to Michel’s gift, dedication and support of young Dominican musicians.

It is important to note that Berklee also awarded a number of partial-tuition scholarships as well as a couple of 5 week Summer Performance Programs Scholarships to the other fine talents in the group of finalists.

Also, we owe a debt of thanks to the National Theater for allowing us use of the space for this event, to Orange (telecommunications provider) for sponsoring this event and providing us with top-notch support.  And extra special thanks goes to Herminio León who is not only an artist in the business world, but an award-winning photographer.  He and his team made this event truly special for all involved.

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