Boston, April 22, 2009 –
PJ Walker, from Clarksdale, and Demetrius Williams,
from Brookhaven, both 18, will spend five weeks
this summer in Boston, studying at the prestigious
Berklee College of Music on full scholarships valued
at $7,000 apiece. They’ll join teens from
all over the world for Berklee’s Five-Week
Summer Performance Program.
Both auditioned at sites in
Mississippi where Berklee has twice partnered to
support young musicians with summer scholarships.
Walker is a student of Delta Blues Museum’s
After School Arts and Education program, in Clarksdale.
Williams auditioned at an annual talent showcase
in Crystal Springs organized by the Robert Johnson
summer scholarship recipient
PJ Walker and Shelley Ritter, director of
the Delta Blues Museum.
Walker is currently studying
music composition at Mississippi Valley State University
in Itta Bena, where he also directs a gospel choir.
He teaches third graders how to play the recorder
at Mound Bayou Elementary School. A busy composer,
he writes children’s tunes, jazz and gospel
music, and orchestral compositions, one of which
was performed by a 15-piece ensemble. He also works
in the gift shop at the Delta Blues Museum.
Williams won his scholarship
in a talent showcase organized by Steven Johnson,
grandson of the legendary Delta blues pioneer Robert
Johnson, at the Crystal Springs High School. Williams
plays the keyboard and sings. His career goal is
to become a contemporary gospel performer and songwriter.
Besides gospel music, he also writes r&b songs.
Performing regularly at his church, Williams is
now starting to play in clubs and other venues.
On May 9, he’ll perform at the Robert Johnson
Birthday Blast, a free festival at Lake Chautauqua
Park, in Crystal Springs.
To read more about each recipient, visit berkleeontour.com.
Berklee College of Music was founded on the revolutionary
principle that the best way to prepare students
for careers in music was through the study and practice
of contemporary music. For over 60 years, the college
has evolved constantly to reflect the state of the
art of music and the music business. With over a
dozen performance and non-performance majors, a
diverse and talented student body representing 70-plus
countries, and a music industry "who's who"
of alumni, Berklee is the world's premier learning
lab for the music of today — and tomorrow.