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Christiane has been on the faculty of Berklee College of Music since 2007. An alum of the prestigious school herself, she tremendously enjoys giving back and contributing to the making of the next generation of musicians- whether in western styles and techniques or  by introducing them to eastern traditions and giving them the opportunity to work with visiting artists through the many events she directs. Since her appointment, Christiane has been instrtumental in creating Middle Eastern, Balkan and Songwritng curricula, as well as founding the acclaimed Annual Middle Eastern Festival, which attracts renowned artists and passionate crowds every year. Below is an overview of  some of what Christiane offers at Berklee College of Music. Please send all Berklee related inquiries to

Private lessons (voice)

One on one sessions that focus on technique, repertoire, stylistic considerations, and vocal curriculum. All levels, all styles.

Eastern Vocal Styles
(not offered 2019)

A beginner to intermediate vocal survey ensemble that explores eastern styles ranging from Arabic music to Balkan, Gypsy and South Asian traditions. Highly recommended for anyone interested in exploring the fundamentals of eastern modal concepts and odd rhythmic cyles. 

The Middle Eastern Fusion Ensemble (MEF)

An advanced fusion ensemble that brings together students from all over the world to explore the different ways eastern and western musical languages can communicate. Improvisation, groove, phrasing and intonation are thoroughly explored, Repertoire includes traditional and contemporary music from the Middle East, the Balkans, the Caucasus, Andalusia and South Asia, as well as original music by students and faculty. 


Created by Karam in 2007, this ensemble was also offered in collaboration with Flamenco great Javier Limon between 2012- 2014, and over the years has hosted visiting artists such as Erkan Ogur, Bobby McFerrin, Bassam Saba, Tigran Hamasyan and Husnu Senlendirici. 


By audition only.

The Pletenitsa Balkan Choir

The Pletenitsa Balkan choir was founded in 2011 and has been performing extensively and garnering great praise It's a multicultural ensemble that comes together to celebrate vocal and choral traditions from the Balkans, the Caucasus, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. In 2013, the ensemble was baptized with the name 'Pletenitsa' by Bulgarian icon Binka Dobreva, and has since its inception shared the stage with Javier Limon, Pepe de Lucia, Jose Merce and Mario Frangoulis.


By audition only.

Songwriting and Social Change


A course that explores the different ways a songwriter can create positive social change through his/her songs. Craft, storytelling and various tools are explored, as well as today's world and how we can positively contribute to it.

The Berklee Annual Middle Eastern Festival

A celebrated annual event that brings together artists, students and community from the Middle East, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean to explore connections between these different traditions. The festival includes clinic and performances, with a finale at the Berklee Performance Center with all the participating artists and musicians.

Songs for Social Contest 

(Co-directed by Christiane Karam & Mark Simos)


An annual songwriting contest that celebrates songs for social change. Prizes are awarded to the top 3 winners and the top 12 finalists perform in a showcase.

The Berklee Annual International Folk Festival

(Co-directed by Christiane Karam & Vessela Stoyanova)


A celebrated annual event that spans 3 days and celebrates different musical cultures from around the world. Visiting artists, students and alumni perform and present clinics, and several showcases display the different traditions, culminating in a larger than life finale at the Berklee Performance Center on the last evening.

The Women Musicians Network Annual Concert 

(Co-directed by Lucy Holstedt & Christiane Karam)


A joyous annual event which celebrates women composers, arrangers, poets, dancers, visual artists and performers at the college.

Beginning Improvisation


A vocal ensemble that teaches and explores the fundamentals of improvisation. Various styles are surveyed and personal development and playfulness are emphasized. 

                                                                                   Survey of Mediterranean Music

This class surveys the rich musical traditions of the Mediterranean region, with an emphasis on assimilating some of melodic, rhythmic and harmonic elements and incorporating them in original compositions. 

Vocal Improvisation in the Jazz Idiom


A class founded by Vocal Jazz master Bob Stoloff, Fundamentals of vocal jazz and jazz improvisation are addressed, including harmony, rhythm, phrasing and scatting. Various artists are studied and assginements include improvisation and transcriptions,

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