Scottsdale Community College (SCC) will recognize student virtuosity and achievement at the 9th Annual George Benson Honorary Scholarship and SCC Music Department Showcase, “A Spectacular Night of Entertainment”, on Feb. 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center (PAC).
The SCC Music Department Advisory Committee supports a thriving student experience through comprehensive music instruction and financial support. The department puts on the showcase yearly, awarding the George Benson Honorary Scholarship to one outstanding student in the SCC Music Department program.
George Benson is a legend of jazz, R&B, and pop music. The formation of his legacy has included reaching No. 1 on the Billboard charts, 10 Grammy Awards and a star has been placed in his honor on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. George Benson was a musical prodigy during his childhood. He made his first record at the age of 9. Benson understands the value of exploring the musical arts during early development and has supported the sponsorship of students at SCC since 2011.
The night of entertainment will feature musical selections from Mr. Benson, SCC music program students, and faculty musicians.
This year Karen Wright, a military veteran, music therapy advocate, and community volunteer, will be presented with the annual gift.
Wright joined the military after high school in order to gain financial assistance with college and support her continued learning in the musical arts. Subsequent to her service, she relocated to Arizona to pursue higher education. Wright said, “I believe music is my calling and God has put me here to share that with the world.” Wright plans to use her scholarship to pursue working with troubled youth.
This year there was another outstanding musician who will receive an honorable mention, Shontionn Pridgon. He is a singer and bourgeoning audio producer, having appeared on the NBC television show, The Voice. He aspires to help the youth share their own personal stories and express themselves through music.
In an article published by the Sydney Morning Herald, Benson said, “I don’t play golf, I’m too busy practicing my guitar every day. It’s a discovery thing.” The purpose of the concert is to showcase the discovery of music, but also to contribute donations to the scholarship fund. For many students, a scholarship is a deciding factor on whether they can continue their education at SCC and beyond.
The event is free and open to the general public. A suggested donation of $10 is recommended and attendees can register for seating online.
It is the mission of the Scottsdale Community College Music Advisory Committee to provide, enhance, encourage, and support a positive and proactive musically enriched environment and experience through music education, community awareness, and public outreach for aspiring, future musicians and the community at large.
For more information about this event or the music program visit SCC Music Department.