Thomas Turner of Minetto Graduates from Berklee College of Music

BOSTON, MASS. – Thomas Turner of Minetto participated in Berklee College of Music’s 2012 Commencement held recently in Boston at Boston University’s Agganis Arena.

Turner received a Bachelor of Music in Professional Music from the President of Berklee College of Music, Roger Brown.

President Brown presented honorary doctor of music degrees to Rock and Roll Hall of Famers the Eagles, 27-time Grammy Award winner Alison Krauss, and innovative Ethiopian musician Mulatu Astatke.

Astatke delivered the commencement address to the graduating class and an estimated crowd of more than 4,000 guests at the Agganis Arena.

Berklee’s class of 2012 included more than 900 students graduating with bachelor of music degrees or professional diplomas.

Female graduates numbered 280, representing 31 percent of the total class– the largest number ever.

International students from 58 different countries made up 34 percent of the class. The largest number of graduates from outside the United States were from South Korea and Japan. Students from as far away as Guam, Iceland, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Zimbabwe were among the graduating class.

Domestic students were from 43 states-the greatest number from Massachusetts, California, and New York. The top three majors were professional music, performance and music business/management. Guitar, voice and piano were the three most common means of musical expression among students of the graduating class.

After accepting his honorary degree, Don Henley of the Eagles, referred to the student performance at Friday evening’s commencement concert, “Sometimes I worry about the future of music and culture. But, after what we all witnessed here last night, I have renewed hope and faith in the future of music. It was truly inspiring.”

At the annual commencement concert, also at the Agganis Arena. some of the college’s most accomplished students presented a tribute to the honorees with performances of music associated with their careers and two of the honorees performed. Backed by the Berklee Gospel Ensemble, Krauss performed the traditional Appalachian song “Down by the River to Pray.” Astatke played vibraphone with students on his composition “Yakermew Sew.” Other concert highlights included student renditions of Eagles’ hits “Hotel California,” “Take It Easy,” and “Desperado,” and a Krauss duets medley.

Berklee College of Music was founded on the revolutionary principal that the best way to prepare students for careers in music was through the study and practice of contemporary music.