• Saxophonist Edmar Noé Colón Gierbolini has known since middle school that music is his calling and since high school that he wanted to study at Berklee. A dual major in classical composition and performance originally from Coamo, Puerto Rico, he has been a student with the Berklee Global Jazz Institute for seven of his nine semesters and a work-study assistant there for an eighth. 

  • BGJI Graduate Guest Artist

    A creative force on the international jazz scene for the last two decades, drummer and composer Adam Cruz is best known for his work with Danilo Pérez, Steve Wilson, David Sanchez, and Edward Simon. Cruz was born in New York City. He worked extensively with saxophonist David Sanchez and the Mingus Big Band during the 1990s. He then toured with Chick Corea, recording Origin: A Week at the Blue Note, and spent the end of the '90s touring in a duo setting with guitarist Charlie Hunter.

  • Class of 2016

    Playing for a higher purpose has been saxophonist Gregory Groover’s modus operandi since he was a teenager. Groover, the son of a pastor, picked up the saxophone after hanging around worship band rehearsals at church, experience that prepared Groover for the Berklee Global Jazz Institute’s unique mission.

  • Class of 2015

    Israeli saxophonist, composer, and educator Lihi Haruvi was awarded a full scholarship to Berklee while in high school. Two years after completing her mandatory military service, she pursued her studies and started her career.

  • Greek laouto player Vasilis Kostas came to the Berklee Global Jazz Institute (BGJI) with dual interests: bringing to the fore the soloist side of the laouto in Greek traditional music and in jazz improvisation, and working toward musical programs for abandoned children in Greece that will help bring social change.
  • BGJI Graduate Guest Artist

    David Liebman’s career has spanned more than four decades, beginning with his "apprenticeship" period in the early 1970s, when he played with drummer Elvin Jones (Live at the Lighthouse) and Miles Davis (On the Corner). Since then, he has formed his own groups (Lookout Farm, Quest, the Dave Liebman Group) featuring musicians such as John Scofield, Richie Beirach, Billy Hart, Adam Nussbaum, Al Foster, John Abercrombie, and Vic Juris.

  • Class of 2013

    When Sergio Martinez thinks of the Berklee Global Jazz Institute, he thinks of his “second family.” A 2013 Berklee graduate who studied jazz performance, this Madrid, Spain, native is back in his home country teaching at Berklee's campus in Valencia, Spain, and trying to pass on to other students the lessons and traditions he learned from his BGJI professors.

  • Class of 2017
    Chilean piano player and composer Orión Morales worked with Danilo Pérez and Patricia Pérez, inspired by their work in Chile, Panama, and Boston, before being accepted to the Berklee Global Jazz Institute graduate program. Now he is the vice-chair of Projazz in Chile, the leading music institution of his country and Berklee's international partner.
  • Since graduating from Berklee, Caili O’Doherty has followed her passions for composition, performance, education, and humanitarian work, performing at several of the world’s top jazz festivals and teaching at the Stanford Jazz Workshop and with the WeBop early-childhood jazz education program.

  • Class of 1988
    Founder and Artistic Director of the Berklee Global Jazz Institute

    A Grammy Award winner, the pianist, composer, and producer Danilo Pérez is also an educator and social activist. He is a humanitarian and a leading proponent of global jazz.

    Born in Panama in 1965, Pérez learned from his father the concept of interconnected education. He attended Berklee in the 1980s and has led his own groups since the early 1990s. He has also worked as a music educator in the U.S. and around the world for more than 20 years.

  • Managing Director of the Berklee Global Jazz Institute

    Marco Pignataro is a multitalented saxophone player, composer, and educator originally from Bologna, Italy. He has shared stages with artists such as Eddie Gomez, Joanne Brackeen, Danilo Pérez, George Garzone, John Patitucci, Rufus Reid, Kenwood Dennard, Terri Lyne Carrington, Antonio Sanchez, Ben Street, Brian Lynch, Billy Drummond, Billy Hart, Victor Lewis, Clark Terry, and Jon Faddis, among others.

  • Brazilian hand-percussionist Negah Santos came to the Berklee Global Jazz Institute with dual interests: drumming and social work—passions born of her upbringing in São Paulo, Brazil. Within the BGJI, she strives to further intertwine her playing and social activism.