City Music Festival and Blowout Concert, August 8-11

By 
Margot Edwards
July 29, 2009

Berklee College of Music presents its 16th annual Berklee City Music Blowout Concert on Tuesday, August 11, 7:30 p.m., at the Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston. The concert will feature rock, pop, jazz, inspirational music, and r&b performances by talented urban teens from the Boston area and City Music Network sites around the country. The evening will culminate in the awarding of full-tuition scholarships to attend Berklee beginning this fall. Recipients have auditioned for the scholarships, but the winners won't be revealed until the night of the concert.

Tickets to the Berklee City Music Blowout are $5 for the public, $1 with a Berklee ID or a student ID from ANY school. This year, the Blowout is a benefit with proceeds supporting City Music scholarships. Tickets can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com or in person at the Berklee Performance Center Box Office, Monday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6:00 p.m. For more information, please call 617 747-2261 or visit berkleebpc.com.

The City Music Festival, August 8-10, presents FREE concerts of jazz, inspirational, Latin, and rock music by City Music students at Berklee venues, culminating with the Blowout Concert August 11. A full schedule is below.

The Blowout Concert will feature 72 teen musicians and vocalists—26 of whom are vying for full-tuition Berklee scholarships—representing Boston, Cambridge, Chelsea, Revere, and Lawrence, Massachusetts, and City Music Network sites in Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Memphis, New Orleans, Newark, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Washington DC, and Wilmington. All are attending Berklee's Five-Week Summer Performance Program through the City Music Summer Scholarship.

Berklee City Music is the collegeʼs strategic educational initiative that uses contemporary music to reach underserved fourth- to 12th-graders. Programming includes instruction by expert faculty, individualized mentoring, after-school classes, Saturday schooling, summer study, and full-tuition scholarships to attend Berklee at no cost to the students or their families. City Music has provided educational and mentoring opportunities to more than 1,000 local teens from urban areas since 1991.

Three years ago, Berklee's City Music Network—launched in 2001—expanded to include partnerships with community organizations nationwide that actively share the goal of changing teenage lives with contemporary music education. Students' experiences are life-changing, from the performance and mentoring opportunities to the online music theory, ear training, and performance curriculum focusing on popular r&b, rock, hip-hop, and jazz songs.

City Music Festival events are FREE and open to the public:

Saturday, August 8
Faculty/Student Jam Session
8:00 p.m.–11:00 p.m.
Cafe 939, 939 Boylston Street

Sunday, August 9
George Russell Jr. Ensemble, with spotlight guest City Music Choir under the direction of Nichelle Mungo
6:30 p.m.–8:00 p.m.
David Friend Recital Hall, 921 Boylston Street

Monday, August 10
Victor Mendoza's Latin Jazz Ensemble, with spotlight guest Marty Walsh Ensemble
4:30 p.m.–6:00 p.m.
Berk Recital Hall, 1140 Boylston Street