T&K Foundation Awards Dallas ISD Arts Scholarships for Ninth Consecutive Year

Dallas – For the ninth consecutive year, the Thompson & Knight Foundation awarded $20,000 in academic scholarships to four graduating senior students of the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (“BTW”) from each of the school’s clusters – Dance, Music, Theater, and Visual Arts.

“Nine years ago we established our Arts Magnet scholarship program to further our efforts to promote the arts in the Dallas community,” said Andrew Melsheimer, Chair of the Thompson & Knight Foundation. “Thompson & Knight’s dedication to the Arts District dates back to the early 1900s, and we are pleased to again provide scholarships to four accomplished students at Booker T. Washington High School.”

This year’s scholarship recipients are Robert Gilliam (Music), Eleni Loving (Dance), Bernadette Negrete (Visual Arts), and Demi Tomasides (Theater.)

Robert Gilliam is a multi-instrumentalist, playing different genres of music ranging from pop to jazz to classical. He plays the cello, saxophone, and a little piano as well. This summer Robert will play shows at local jazz venues as well as perform at the prestigious Monterey Jazz Festival in September with fellow members of his BTW jazz combo. Robert will then attend Johns Hopkins University’s Peabody Conservatory to obtain a degree in Jazz Studies.

A Young Arts Foundation Finalist, Eleni Loving was a member of all three of BTW’s dance ensembles and graduated with high honors as a DISD Scholar. Her choreography was featured in main stage performances at the school. She is currently attending a dance intensive at LINES Ballet in San Francisco and afterwards will attend The Juilliard School in New York City to obtain a degree in Dance.

Bernadette Negrete is a graduate of BTW’s Visual Arts Conservatory and was the President of the National Arts Honors Society. By the end of her senior year, Bernadette had successfully finished two internships and exhibited her work at the Dallas Museum of Art, One Arts Plaza, the El Centro Gallery, the Latino Cultural Center, and the Bath House Cultural Center. Bernadette will attend the Maryland College of Art and Design in Baltimore to pursue a major in illustration. Her goal is to become a book illustrator and author.

Demi Tomasides is a graduate of BTW’s Theater Conservatory. Demi plans to attend Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, to study Theater and Communications. Specifically, she will be focusing on directing, playwriting, stage management, and theater-for-young-audiences. Her ultimate goal is to create a theater company for children with special needs and learning differences.