Sonny Rollins Accepts Honorary Degree

Among the 250-some musicians who received degrees at the New England Conservatory’s 131st Commencement exercises on May 19 was none other than Sonny Rollins. No, Rollins didn’t spend the Fall and Spring semesters sleeping in a dorm room bunk bed, attending keggers or losing sleep before a final performance recital. Rollins’ degree was an honorary Doctor of Music degree, one of three awarded at the ceremony to masters of the respective musics. The other honorary degree recipients were Venezuelan youth orchestra system mastermind José Antonio Abreu and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer George Perle.

In the photo, Rollins talks with New England Conservatory’s Jazz Studies and Improvisation Department Chair Ken Schaphorst.

Photo credit: Kate Searle