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Robert Christopherson teaches in the Piano Department at Berklee College of Music. He is a pianist, singer, performer, composer, record producer, and a passionate mentor and lifelong student of music. His interest in music began early in life because of the influence of his father, a violinist with the Cleveland Orchestra, and his mother, a concert pianist with a doctorate in music. Christopherson performs frequently throughout New England and serves as music director for Boston's Hampshire House. As a sideman, he has performed or recorded with Christine McVie, Chuck Berry, Phil Wilson, and the Platters, among many others. He has studied jazz piano and composition with renowned jazz guru Charlie Banacos.
"Every student is unique and possesses his or her own strengths and weaknesses. As a teacher, I strive to work from this point. At times, music can be overwhelming, so each lesson must inspire, energize, and motivate the student. There are lots of exercises we must practice to be able to express our art. The greater our skills, the greater the art we can create."
"From my own background as a performer, I've learned how to prepare for a concert, how to choose the right musicians, how to choose the order of songs, and how to deal with the nerves factor. I've also had a lot of experience with other, less obvious aspects of performance such as promotion, warming up, and memorization. I draw on this experience in my teaching."
"Whatever the style of music being played, a musician must have a good feel, a strong inner sense of time. This is not something we are born with. We have to develop it with rhythmic ear training, and every style must be studied."
"My priority, beyond the academics, is never to lose sight of why we are here: our love of music and our inner urge and need for expression. The students' quest for knowledge and passion for music is the best part about teaching at Berklee. Also, the great resources and support the college provides enable me to be my best."