On a blustery New England evening last week, a few my fellow Sonicbidders and I headed across town to Berklee’s Café 939 to check out the culminating event of Berklee’s battle to win a full scholarship to their prestigious 5-Week Summer Performance Program. The college accepted Token submissions from Sonicbids artists across North America and around the world and selected 6 talented songwriters to come to Boston and compete in a battle judged by professors from Berklee’s songwriting department.
We were totally blown away by the talent of all the performers, starting with Boston’s own Sophia Moon, accompanied on piano and guitar. Toronto’s Hilary Weaver brought up the energy in the room with crazy powerful vocals over catchy pop-rock tracks, while Kat McGivern (Boston, MA) and Jon Jackson (Raleigh, NC) showed off their versatility, accompanying themselves on both piano and guitar. Portland, Maine’s Justin Lantrip took the first runner up prize of a $3000 scholarship to the 5-Week Summer performance Program, while Sophie Moon received the second runner up prize of a $2000 scholarship.
In the end, it was the 14-year old singer and guitarist from the Chicago area Kate Diaz that walked away with a full $4000 scholarship to the 5-week program (and a year of Sonicbids membership to boot). Kate also nabbed a slot on the Kidzapalooza stage at this year’s Lollapalooza festival in Chicago’s Grant Park. I don’t know about you, but I was just heading out to my first concerts and had never played guitar outside of my bedroom at that age, so I’m excited to see the awesome things she’ll be doing over the next few years.
Congrats to Kate and all of the performers. Here are a few choice shots care of Listings Services rep and resident Twitterholic Nick Mendez.[gallery]