The David G. Berger Master Class Series brings Arts Education students together with professional artists to inspire and motivate emerging artists as they explore their creative potential.  A conversation removes the veneer of a polished performance and reveals truths to the students including the hard work and dedication demanded of professional artists.

Students can ask questions and learn about an artist’s life experiences.  Thanks to a generous gift from the Berger Family Foundation, up to 15 Master Classes take place each year, 10 of them are led by mainstage artists and five by artists who are regularly engaged with Arts Education at NJPAC.

The David G. Berger Master Class Series Library reflects the most popular Masterclass video sessions that occurred this season.  Each video is supplemented with resources that include the artist’s bio, background on career and artistic approaches, discussions questions and additional content in alignment with national educational standards.

watch & learn

Discover Jazz with Christian McBride

Esteemed bassist Christian McBride plays with young artists and describes a more inclusive future for the Jazz community. McBride discusses a history of rhythm and the importance of connecting with the emotions in music.

Discover Musical Theater with Klea Blackhurst

Broadway performer Klea Blackhurst mimics a professional vocal audition with  NJPAC’s Musical Theater students. Detailing how to prepare for an audition and the different parts of voice that produce different vocal effects, Blackhurst readies young artists for future creative projects.

Discover Jazz Composition with Stefon Harris

Jazz vibraphonist and Rutgers University Professor Stefon Harris uses the concept of triads to simplify intricate chords for NJPAC’s Jazz for Teens youth artists. Describing music as a “qualitative science”, Harris discusses the process of associating chords with feelings rather than complex names.

Discover Hip Hop with Kurtis Blow

Kurtis Blow, the first commercially successful emcee, discusses the historical roots of hip-hop. Using personal anecdotes and industry awareness, Kurtis Blow encourages students to include their personal values in their work and not to underestimate the importance of an education.

Discover Finance with Daymond John

Thought leader Daymond John discusses the importance of using financial intelligence to uplift those who don’t come from generational wealth. John communicates that individuals without generational advantage are often burdened with working harder and holding themselves to a higher standard in order to succeed.

Discover Hip Hop as Activism with Dupre “DoItAll” Kelly

Hip Hop Legend and member of Newark’s City Council, Dupre “DoItAll”’ Kelly (Emcee, Lords of the Underground) educates young artists on the relationships between hip-hop and activism. Kelly discusses the importance of innovation, perseverance, and never losing sight of your creativity.

Learn more about our Arts Education programs.