It is the top award given by the Latin Grammy Cultural Foundation, which this year will provide scholarships for 38 other Latin students from around the world, ranging from three $100,000 “Gifted Tuition” scholarships to 35 “Tuition Assistance” awards of up to $10,000 each.
“Coming out of what I deem the most atypical year, between a global pandemic, a global economic downturn and racial injustices, I am so impressed the foundation has been able to hold true to its mission,” said Tanya Ramos-Puig, president of the Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation. “This annual scholarship represents our investment in both education, and equality.”
The Latin Grammy Foundation has given scholarships to 265 music students in the past six years. All have graduated from a four-year accredited program says Ramos-Puig, who was appointed president of the foundation earlier this year and is looking to expand its reach. “It’s impressive these students will be the new Latin music creators and they come from all over the world,” she added.
In tapping Juanes to help fund the Prodigy scholarship, the foundation went to an artist who has strong ties to the Latin Grammys and also helms his own foundation in Colombia.
“I have always felt strongly that we have a responsibility to support music education so that the sounds of our culture continue to grow in future generations,” said Juanes. “When I saw Xavier’s performance videos, I knew immediately that he possesses an immense natural talent that will be able to reach even greater heights with this opportunity.”
Cintrón received his award July 13 during a private ceremony in Miami.
“As the first Puerto Rican cuatrista to receive the Prodigy Scholarship, I feel immense gratitude and responsibility,” he said in a statement. “I wish to continue to develop and acquire new experiences to be able to share this knowledge and inspire young people like myself.”
Winners to the Latin Grammy Cultural Foundation scholarship are chosen by a rigorous selection committee. This year’s students come from a wide range of countries, including eight students each from Brazil and Venezuela. Each will study in an equally broad range of institutions, from Berklee and Manhattan School of Music to conservatories in Spain, Puerto Rico and Mexico.