The Berklee City Music Newsletter caught up with MJ Rodriguez, who is currently playing “Angel” in the Off-Broadway production of RENT.

What inspired you to participate in the Berklee City Music program?
NJPAC (New Jersey Performing Arts Center) afforded me the opportunity to attend City Music, and it was always something I wanted to do. Their program is spectacular! By the end of the program, you obtain so much useful information that is so crucial in the music world.



What is your first memory of the learning environment that Berklee City Music had to offer? 


Music Theory. I learned music theory back home, but I went way more in depth when I went to City Music.


How has your experience at Berklee College of Music and Berklee City Music helped you in your career as a musician? 


I now have more confidence as a musician. I understand music way more than I did before, and I can communicate with other musicians on another level. Those things have helped me with my network tremendously.  I’m actually playing “Angel” in the Off-Broadway revival of RENT and through that role I received the Clive Barnes Award, which recognizes young upcoming artists in today’s society.


If you were to recommend Berklee City Music to a younger student, what would you say?

You will definitely get distracted with all the fun and freedom, but make sure that you go in fully prepared. Yes it is fun, but the fun comes after you have done the hard work. It prepares you for college life and how time management, organization, and focus are key. recently sat down with MJ to talk about his role in RENT. (click here) recently featured MJ’s receipt of the Clive Barnes award. (click here)

In the short clip below, MJ shares his thoughts about Berklee City Music: