Q&A with Arjun Roy, Interim Director of Education for Power Station at BerkleeNYC
Arjun Roy M.M. '16. at the City of Arts and Sciences, where Berklee's campus in Valencia, Spain is located. Photo by Melissa Kolaks Broaddus.
“Berklee Valencia’s master’s degree programs are unique and challenging, and will push you artistically and academically in a meaningful way.” – Arjun Roy
Arjun Roy M.M. ’16 is a freelance producer, recordist, and mix engineer for a variety of local and international artists. Since early 2018, Roy has served as interim director of education at Power Station at BerkleeNYC, where he develops, executes, and analyzes special educational programs aimed at multiple disciplines within music and the arts. We recently sat down with him to discuss his new role. Here are some excerpts from the conversation.
Why did you decide to pursue the Master of Music in Music Production, Technology, and Innovation program at Berklee’s Valencia campus?
I chose to pursue the Music Production, Technology, and Innovation degree at Berklee Valencia because it seemed like the perfect fit for me in terms of immersion in music and technology, as well as forward-facing ideas and innovation.
A large part of our participation and success in the music industry depends on furthering our knowledge and learning at the leading edge of our chosen discipline. The MPTI program seemed to fit that bill.
How has your Berklee experience influenced you as a professional?
My time at Berklee, both in Boston as well as Valencia, was an immersion in hard work and professionalism occuring at a fast pace. I honed my practical and technical skills while developing and recognizing the importance of soft skills. So much of our work in this industry is dependant on personal relationships, so putting people first, developing meaningful professional relationships, and then following through with hard work and consistent output is a good way to operate.
Also, I would be remiss to not mention the value of my fellowship year with the MPTI Department, working with program director Pablo Munguía. Pablo entrusted a lot to me in my role, and modeled for me how to lead with understanding and focus while managing a massive workload. His example has been invaluable as I navigate the modern music and entertainment industry across various areas of focus.
Why would you tell other students to come to Berklee’s Valencia campus to study?
I would recommend Berklee’s Valencia campus for a variety of reasons, and for various forms of study. The master’s degree programs are unique and challenging, and will push you artistically and academically in a meaningful way. The city of Valencia, the surrounding region, and Spain itself are so deeply drenched in important history, culture, and music that you cannot help but be inspired each and every day. Even if you choose to study for a semester abroad, you will be affected for the better. Lastly and most importantly, the people who populate the campus, from Executive Director María Martínez Iturriaga to the program directors and the faculty and staff, are some of the most passionate and inspiring educators I have worked with. Every teacher is a working professional and expert in their field, and they are there for the students.
What was the best aspect about the Berklee in Valencia experience?
A worldly perspective on not only music but art and education. Immersing oneself in another country and culture across the world while continuing to learn and dive into artistic expression is immensely valuable in expanding one’s horizons and embracing the global future.
What have you been up to since you graduated?
I have relocated to Canada for the time being, and I am fortunate to have a few varied opportunities on my plate. I am continuing to work as a freelance producer, recordist, and mix engineer, working with a variety of artists across Canada and the world, and reconnecting with the Canadian music industry. I am also working with the amazing team at Power Station at BerkleeNYC in developing, executing, and analyzing special educational programs until the facility closes for renovations later this year. Thankfully, I am able to work remotely when I am at home in Canada.
How did you get involved with the team running Power Station at BerkleeNYC?
After the end of my time at Berklee Valencia, I was approached by some of the BerkleeNYC team, Stephen Webber (executive director) and Ian Kagey (director of operations), to discuss my future plans as well as the trajectory of BerkleeNYC. Everything lined up for me to begin working with them earlier this year, building off the work I did during my time in Valencia.
What aspect of your job do you enjoy the most?
I work with the Power Station team, associated professionals, alumni, and others in helping develop and execute educational programs of varying lengths and across a variety of disciplines. As interim director of education, I have the pleasure of bringing together inspiring individuals and a wide variety of people who choose to spend their time learning and deepening their connection with music and the arts. It is amazing to see the transfer and sharing of knowledge. One aspect I enjoy the most is to see young students, artists, and professionals attend the programs and be inspired by the facility and history, and also become empowered by what they learn, knowing that they possess the skills to make a mark in the future or the present. Another aspect I enjoy is much more basic: as a fan of music and art first, I find it inspiring to be able to travel to and work at the legendary Power Station. So many of my favorite artists have creating timeless works there that I am thankful to inhabit the same space, even for a moment.
Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
I have to acknowledge the teams at both Berklee Valencia and Power Station at BerkleeNYC, and they role they play in working together to create rewarding experiences for all. I have never been around such a collection of motivated, empowered, kind, and brilliant people; I can do what I do because of them. Also, I find that as time goes by, it’s always the same things that lead to success: focused and hard work, discipline, pragmatism, and being unafraid to dream big.