Berklee - Monterey Scholarships and Groups

Berklee College of Music

In 2020, Berklee College of Music and Monterey Jazz Festival will celebrate 25 years of partnership, which includes the presentation of the full-tuition Jimmy Lyons Scholarship to Berklee to a gifted musician from California, and the always highly-anticipated performance by a group from Berklee. Each fall, the college selects their finest students to perform on the stages of Monterey. From 1996-2007, the group featured at Monterey was the Berklee-Monterey Quartet. Since then, other groups from special performance programs from Berklee have appeared at Monterey.

Students from the Berklee's groups have gone on to performances and recordings with Roy Haynes, the Mingus Big Band, Prince, Mariah Carey, and Steps Ahead, to name just a few. Some of the past members include trumpeter Christian Scott, drummers James Williams (Gary Burton), Kendrick Scott (Terence Blanchard) and Steve Hass (studio drummer, Ravi Coltrane, the Manhattan Transfer, John Scofield); bassist Luques Curtis (Gary Burton, Sean Jones); saxophonists Hailey Niswanger (Either/Orchestra, Esperanza Spalding), Walter Smith III (Sean Jones, Jason Moran, Christian McBride) and Jaleel Shaw (Roy Haynes, Mingus Big Band); and clarinetist Anat Cohen.

Since 2008, other special group from Berklee have performed at Monterey, including the Berklee Latin Jazz All-Stars in 2008; Berklee-Monterey Quintet in 2009;  the Berklee Global Jazz Institute Red Ensemble in 2010; Berklee Flamenco in 2011; and the Berklee-Monterey Sextet in 2012.

The Jimmy Lyons Scholarship

Each year, Berklee College of Music and Monterey Jazz Festival seek applicants for the prestigious James L. Lyons Scholarship at Berklee.

Photo © EmilyAnne Nicklay

In 2019, the winner is bassist Nick Isherwood from Medical Lake, Washington. Read more here.

The Lyons Scholarship is named in honor of Monterey Jazz Festival's late founder, James L. (Jimmy) Lyons, who started the Festival in 1958 with a jazz education program at its core. Every year since 1996, a full-tuition scholarship to Berklee is awarded to one outstanding student musician from the West Coast. It is a renewable award; satisfactory academic and musical progress in each successive year will allow the Lyons Scholars to attend Berklee through graduation, entirely tuition-free. All West Coast music students are encouraged to apply.

Berklee faculty members fly to Monterey each year, expressly to audition students during Monterey Jazz Festival’s Next Generation Jazz Festival. Twenty-five students are chosen from the anticipated hundreds of Lyons Scholarship applications Berklee receives. While there is only one Lyons Scholarship awarded yearly, other sizable Berklee scholarships have been awarded to other members from this audition group in the past.

"For Jimmy, a big part of having a festival was the kids, and getting them involved with jazz," said Tim Jackson, Monterey Jazz Festival Artistic Director. "We're thrilled with the relationship with the college, where so many great players have studied, and a full scholarship, at a place like Berklee, is a fitting tribute to Jimmy, who was a real jazz education pioneer."

Jimmy Lyons Scholars at Berklee College of Music

2019: Nick Isherwood, bass
2018: Katie Webster, saxophone
2017: Matthew Tung, trombone
2016: Kenton Dick, saxophone
2015: Jeremy Alvarez, trumpet
2014: Emery Mesich, saxophone
2013: Justin Salisbury, piano
2012: Ayinde Webb, drums
2011: Calvin Barthel, trombone
2010: Alex Hargreaves, violin
2009: Grant Richards, piano
2008: Aaron Bahr, trumpet
2007: Jonathan Pinson, drums
2006: Billy Buss, trumpet
2005: Frank Silva, saxophone
2004: not awarded
2003: Pat Carroll, saxophone
2002: Carlin Muccular, drums
2001: James Williams, drums
2000: Milton Fletcher, piano
1999: Thomas Pridgen, drums
1998: Rushad Eggleston, cello
1997: Dayna Stephens, saxophone
1996: Erik Telford, trumpet

Berklee-Monterey Groups

2019: Berklee Global Jazz Ambassadors featuring George Garzone
Faris Ishaq, Arabic flute
Matt Stubbs, clarinet
Milena Casado, flugelhorn
Anastassiya Petrova, piano
Noam Tanzer, bass
Ilia Blazh, drums
George Garzone, tenor saxophone

2018: Anastassiya Petrova Organ Quartet
Anastassiya Petrova, organ
Alonzo Demetrius, trumpet
Lior Tzemach, guitar
Tyson Jackson, drums

2017: Berklee Global Jazz Ambassadors
Andrew McAnsh, trumpet
Lihi Haruvi, alto & soprano saxophone
Vasilis Kostas, lute
Chase Morrin, piano
Jared Henderson, bass
Nathaniel Winn, drums

2016: Mixcla +1
Zahili Gonzalez Zamora, piano, vocal
Gerson Lazo-Quiroga, bass
Takafumi Nikaido, percussion
Paul Sanchez, trumpet

2015: Berklee Global Jazz Ambassadors
Mao Sone, trumpet (Japan)
Edmar Colón, tenor saxophone (Puerto Rico)
Roni Eytan, harmonica (Israel)
Isaac Wilson, piano (United States)
Seungho Jang, bass (South Korea)
Anthony Fung, drums (Canada)

2014: Sarah McKenzie Quintet
Daniel Rotem, tenor saxophone
Andrew Marzotto, guitar
Sarah McKenzie, piano, vocal
Tabari Lake, bass
Rodney Rocques, drums

2013: Berklee Global Jazz Ambassadors
Edmar Colón, saxophone
John Egizi, trombone
Jared Henderson, bass
Witness Matlou, piano
Mao Sone, trumpet
Jharis Yokley, drums

2012: Berklee-Monterey Sextet
John Egizi, trombone
Nick Frenay, trumpet
Anthony Fung, drums
Hoo Kim, bass
Matt Savage, piano
Erena Terakubo, alto saxophone

2011: Berklee Flamenco
Ali Amr, qanun
Sergio Martinez, percussion
Ariadna Castellanos Rivas, piano
Tamir Shmerling, bass
Enrique “Kalani” Trinidad, flute

2010: Berklee Global Jazz Institute Septet
Andrew Burglass, guitar
Greg Chaplin, bass
Matthew Halpin, tenor saxophone
Christian Li, piano
Hailey Niswanger, alto saxophone
Paulo Stagnaro, percussion
Mark Whitfield Jr., drums

2009: Berklee-Monterey Quintet
Billy Buss, trumpet
Greg Chaplin, bass
Roy Guzman Rodriguez, guitar
Michael Sachs, saxophone
Mark Whitfield Jr., drums

2008: Berklee Latin Jazz All-Stars
Marco Lopez, timbales
Juan Maldonado, bass
Abraham Olivo, piano
Niv Toar, trumpet
Enrique “Kalani” Trinidad, flute
Paulo Stagnaro, congas

2007: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Jeff Miles, guitar
Mika Nishimura, piano
Ryo Shibata, drums
Katie Thiroux, bass

2006: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Lawrence Fields, piano
Hogyu Hwang, bass
Godwin Louis, saxophones
James Williams, drums

2005: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Bryan Baker, guitar
Nick Falk, drums
Aaron Henry, saxophones
Bryan Ladd, bass

2004: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Luques Curtis, bass
Nick Falk, drums
Nir Felder, guitar
Christian Scott, trumpet

2003: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Rafael Alcala, piano
Demian Cabaud, bass
Jordan Perlson, drums
Christian Scott, trumpet

2002: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Mark Kelley, bass
Albert Sanz, piano
Kendrick Scott, drums
Walter Smith III, tenor

2001: no group

2000: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Patrick Cornelius, alto
David Doruzka, guitar
Kendrick Scott, drums
Peter Slavov, bass

1999: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Mark Kelley, bass
Milan Milanovic, piano
Bob Reynolds, tenor
Kendrick Scott, drums

1998: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Charles Haynes, drums
Stefan Schultz, guitar
Jaleel Shaw, alto
Yoshi Waki, bass

1997: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Leo Blanco, piano
Anat Cohen, saxophones
Steve Hass, drums
Yoshi Waki, bass

1996: Berklee-Monterey Quartet
Vincent Bourgeyx, piano
Steve Hass, drums
Ian Martin, bass
Bill Vint, tenor