McCarthy Fifth Graders Showcase Their Talents

Source: Framingham Patch – By Susan Petroni – Pictures By Kevin Cummings


McCarthy staff and teachers created a special video for the talent show, in which the adults performed the Michael Jackson classic Beat It.


Fifth grade students entertained classmates, parents and Framingham residents with their talent Friday night at Fuller Middle School.

The annual fundraising event showcased fifth grade students singing, dancing, playing of musical instruments, performing skits and more.

McCarthy staff and teachers created a special video for the talent show, in which the adults performed the Michael Jackson classic Beat It.

There was also a flash mob to the song What Does The Fox Say.

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2014 Mr. Viking, Jordan Panganiban, Tell How He Taught Himself To Dance Like Michael Jackson (Photos and Video)

Source: Oregan Live – By Laura Frazier


We first photographed Jordan Panganiban during the Mr. Viking pageant in March. This is part of a series of short stories in which we revisit some people who appeared in our coverage and learn more about them

So, do you feel like a celebrity?

He shrugs, unconvinced. Maybe, at Forest Grove High School, at least.

Junior Jordan Panganiban, this year’s Mr. Viking, may not have the iconic status of the late Michael Jackson.

But he can sure move like him.

It started with last year’s Mr. Viking competition. The annual pageant fundraiser lets the school’s men show their stuff in formal and spirit wear portions, a talent show and question and answer session.

Panganiban said the talent portion was intended to be funny, and a friend suggested he do a Michael Jackson impersonation.

So he did, to hits “Billie Jean” and “Beat It,” but he didn’t take it all that seriously.

A year later, without any formal training, Panganiban busted out “Smooth Criminal” at the 2014 Mr. Viking pageant March 12, which raised about $4,500 for aCornelius child with brain cancer.

The 14 boys in the pageant were all good, but let’s just say Pangainban was the clear winner.

 Panganiban, 18, said he’s self-taught, watching YouTube videos and dancing in front of the mirror to nail down Jackson’s moves. Before the pageant he practiced in his room nearly every night for three months.

“It’s something I kinda just found, I guess,” Panganiban said. “I just feel like its something that not very many people do. There’s not very many people who can dance like the King of Pop.”

 For his performance, he dressed in a white jacket and hat, black slacks and tie.

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But the key, what made him even more convincing, was the lean.

Panganiban bought black boots from Goodwill and made them into his own version of Jackson’s “Anti-gravity Shoes”. He cut off the heals and made new ones out of steel, plastic and wood in his uncle’s shop.

They carved a U-shaped slot in the sole of the shoes, which then slide onto the hooks in the wooden board when he steps on. He added straps up his ankles to keep his muscles tight when he leans.

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Panganiban was born in Beaverton, but grew up in the Philippines before moving to Forest Grove when he was six. He remembers little of the country — just bits about cement houses, rain and mosquitoes. He said he can still understand when family speaks in native dialects.

Mr. Viking bragging rights aside, he’s humble and focused. He wouldn’t let his mom watch him rehearse. When he practices, he sometimes closes his eyes. On stage, he pulls his hat down to block out the audience.

But he’s into the reaction, still.

“I just like the audience, when they’re in awe,” he said.

For now he’s finishing high school and working at McDonald’s on the weekends. He’s also getting paid to teach some moves to a friend’s martial arts class for a Michael Jackson themed performance, and will make an appearance during the show in May.

It felt like the whole school was watching Panganiban’s performance during the Mr. Viking pageant. The audience erupted when the crown was placed on his head at the end. 

Yet, he doesn’t seem sure where entertaining will take him. 

“Maybe it’s just a fun little side hobby,” he said. 




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Musical Child Prodigy Malachi Samedy Loves MJ, Dreams Of Playing For President Obama (Video)

Source: North Jersey – Rebecca Baker


Malachi, who got his first drum at the age of 18 months, is hoping his charity performances earn an invitation to play for President Obama. 

Malachi Samedy is a typical 9-year-old boy. He likes computer games. He collects superhero comic books. His favorite subject in school is gym. 

But as soon as he picks up a set of drumsticks, it becomes abundantly clear that the Dwight-Englewood fourth-grader has talent far beyond his years.

“To me, he plays like a man,” said jazz pianist Preston Vismala, who recently played with Malachi at the family’s home in Orange. “A lot of time when I have my back to him, it doesn’t occur to me that I’m playing with a kid.”

Malachi is a musical prodigy. He has been drumming since the age of 2 and performing since 5. He has played at benefit concerts around the New York City area, been the subject of an online documentary and was featured in the Huffington Post.

His dream, however, is to perform for President Obama. “It would be such an honor to play for such a great man,” he said.

Nasser and Marthe Salomon-Samedy are helping their only child develop his skills, enrolling him in an afterschool music program, taking him to private piano lessons and sending him to a private school with an African drumming ensemble.

But the Samedys don’t want their son to lose his childhood to his talent. Malachi still has to do chores, keep up his grades and take care of his pets.

“We’ve been so careful,” Nasser Samedy said. “We’ve said no to ‘The Queen Latifah Show,’ to ‘America’s Got Talent,’ to Steve Harvey. I’m appalled at parents who push kids to be adults. You can never get back your childhood. Let a kid be a kid.”

Malachi has fit in well at the private Dwight-Englewood School, Principal Peter Davies said. He performed with students twice his age at the opening assembly, and Davies said he is popular with his peers.

“Kids really are drawn to him,” he said. “I don’t think I’ve heard an unkind word from him or about him. He’s a very positive force. And it’s not just his music.”

His music teacher, Mary Heveran, called Malachi’s drumming “amazing” but also said he has shown musical ability beyond percussion.

“Twice a year we have a ‘Share Your Music’ program, and I was sure he was going to play the drums,” she recalled. “Instead he sang a song that he wrote. The writing was beautiful. The way he sang it was beautiful.”

While Malachi is primarily a jazz drummer, he plays classical music on the piano and listens to pop music ranging from the Beatles to Bruno Mars. He calls Michael Jackson “the greatest performer who ever lived.” If you disagree, “he’ll get into an argument with you,” his father said.

Music is in Malachi’s blood. His grandfather, Emmanuel Samedy, was a percussionist in Haiti and a club performer in New York City. Nasser Samedy became a professional bassist and played with a hip-hop group in the early 1990s, Color Me Badd, whose debut album featured the hits “I Wanna Sex You Up” and “All 4 Love.”

After leaving the group, Samedy played professionally as a guest bassist, touring with Paula Abdul and collaborating with other R&B artists, before returning to the New York area in 1995.

That year he met Haitian artist Marthe Salomon at a bus stop in New Jersey. Malachi was born in 2004, and from his earliest days he showed a propensity for drumming.

“It’s like the drums [were] always calling him,” said his mother, a preschool teacher in Newark. “The minute he could hold something in his hand, he started hitting on things. He was constantly trying to play something. He was drumming all over the house. After a while I told Nasser, ‘You have to do something.’ “

His father bought a drum pad and drumsticks for Malachi at 18 months. At age 2 Malachi had his own full drum set, complete with high-hat and cymbals.

At age 4 he was the youngest student accepted into Mark Murphy’s Music, a private music school in South Orange. Murphy said the little boy’s maturity was “striking” and that it was clear he would be able to handle music lessons from adults.

“He’s kind of like a sponge,” Murphy said. “He’s really in a special top-tier bracket.”

Malachi and his father soon were performing together at inner-city schools, in what they called the “All Things Possible” Tour. Malachi remembered his pep talk to students: “If you want to be a fireman, you can be a fireman. If you want to be a policeman, you can be a policeman. If you want to be a musician like me and my dad, you can be a musician. All things are possible.”

STAFF PHOTOS BY CARMINE GALASSO Nine-year-old Malachi Samedy jamming with his father, Nasser, at home in Orange during a session on Dec. 13.

Nine-year-old Malachi Samedy jamming with his father, Nasser, at home in Orange during a session on Dec. 13.

Word of Malachi’s talent spread, and he found himself invited to professional charity concerts. In 2011 he performed with five-Grammy-winning jazz musician Roy Wooten at bergenPAC to raise money for Haiti and at CNBC’s “Night of Hope” benefit to promote child safety across the country.

Performing in front of a crowd doesn’t faze him.

“When you go onstage enough, you end up getting used to it,” he said. “I get to express all my feelings into whatever I want to play.”

This year Malachi performed at the Urban League for Bergen County’s annual fundraising and scholarship gala in Tenafly and at a gun-violence prevention benefit in Newark. In the spring he plans to play at a fundraiser for sickle cell anemia.

The charity performances, his father said, are a way for Malachi to “give back” and, possibly, to earn a chance to play for the president.

“The foundation for that was: If you do great things, great things will come back to you,” he said.

Englewood City Councilwoman Lynne Algrant, who met Nasser Samedy when he managed a now-closed Staples store in Englewood, helped Malachi apply to Dwight-Englewood, where her husband works as the high school principal.

“He clearly loves to play and loves to perform, but he’s just as glad to be running around,” she said. “It’s a family with such wonderful values. They see his gift as something for the community.”

Vismala, who lives in Englewood and is a Grammy-winning music producer as well as a jazz pianist, said playing with the young drummer is “tremendous.”

“The experience is so beautiful,” he said. “I can throw things at him and he communicates — that’s the essence of jazz. He’s just responding to what’s going on.”

Click here to see article video with Malachi:


12 Year Old Cam Anthony Is Young Man With A Grown-Up Voice

Source: By Mann Frisby

Camren Sherman

SAM COOKE and Ben E. King are not two singers you’d typically find on the playlist of a 12-year-old seventh-grader. Cam Anthony is not your typical preteen.

This Philly kid, born Camren Anthony Sherman, has become an international singing sensation through the power of YouTube and video shares, with more than 500,000 views and counting.

In the last two months, he has jetted across the country with his parents, Melissa and Lamar, courting record-deal offers from industry legends such as Dr. Dre and Russell Simmons. A couple of weekends ago, after hearing him singing his heart out on the Internet, a concert promoter invited him to open for Kem, Ron Isley and Patti LaBelle at Constitution Hall, in Washington D.C.

“It was awesome that I got to sing there,” he said. “I saw Patti LaBelle backstage. She noticed me and came up to me and gave me a hug and said, ‘You’re a good singer.’ “

While Cam stands just an inch short of 5 feet tall, his voice has the kind of power normally reserved for vocalists twice his age. His delivery is captivating – but not in the auto-tuned, over-the-top fashion that has become the norm for many of today’s artists.

Camren’s voice is beautifully raw and real. And mature, bringing to mind Jackson 5-era Michael Jackson. He also has a mature attitude – confident, yet humble – about what the Internet is doing to nurture his career. “This experience has been amazing for me, because I never thought that I would blow up this fast,” he said. “I am really excited about this blessing.”

Although his parents had posted other YouTube videos of their boy singing, the serious buzz for Cam Anthony began after he covered Bruno Mars’ “When I Was Your Man” in June.

“When we put the Bruno Mars video up, I asked everyone to share it and they did,” Melissa Sherman recalled. It has gotten more than 20,000 hits, including one that set some wheels in motion.

“Someone sent me the link on a Saturday and on that following Monday, we flew up to Philly to sit down with his parents,” said Ramone Cowert, of The Koncept Administration, a Florida-based music-management company. “We came to an agreement, and by the following Thursday, he was in Miami recording. Within 10 days of that he was singing for L.A. Reid, at Epic Records.”

Last month, his take on the Grammy-nominated Lorde hit “Royals” was uploaded and the phone started ringing. Since then, Cam Anthony, his parents and Cowert have attended more meetings regarding his future as a recording artist.

While pursuing his dream to become “as big as Michael Jackson,” the seventh-grader has still kept up straight A’s at Tacony Academy Charter School, in Northeast Philadelphia.

“I really love school because of the socialization and togetherness with my friends,” he said. “My favorite subject is math, because it just comes naturally to me.”

So, between the homework, travel and time just being a kid, how does this young man learn and process the lyrics and emotions of material that was written decades before he was born?

“Usually it takes a day or two for me to learn a new song,” he said. “But if I really like it, and I really put my mind to it, I can learn it in as little as four hours. I like the soul behind ‘Stand By Me,’ and I really enjoy singing it.”

Another classic that he tackles head-on in his YouTube collection is the G.C. Cameron classic “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday,” from the 1975 film “Cooley High.”

“I really don’t know much about ‘Cooley High,’ but I love the harmonies of Boyz II Men,” Cam said. “They put so much soul into their songs.”

Aja Graydon Dantzler, of Kindred the Family Soul, first saw Cam Anthony’s performance when someone forwarded her his “Royals” video.

“He certainly has a chance in this business,” Dantzler said. “He has a very mature voice, and he reminds me a lot of [Philly singer] Jazmine Sullivan in that regard. He is very polished and marketable, and certainly has all the potential in the world to me.”

Only time will tell if this Philadelphia youngster will join the ranks of such male vocalists as Teddy Pendergrass, Musiq Soulchild and Boyz II Men, who have achieved great success out of this city. In the meantime, he is enjoying the moment and the connections he’s making around the world online.

“One lady told me on Facebook that her baby can’t go to sleep without listening to my music, and that warmed my heart,” Cam Anthony said. “I’m thankful to my fans who are men, women and children. I would just like for them to know that everything is possible and to keep striving toward their dreams.”

I Need A Family: Dynamic Da’Shawn Needs Love And Structure, Loves MJ

Source: Mlive – By Lynn Shackleford


When describing Da’Shawn, his adoption worker says the word “dynamic” comes to mind.

Da’Shawn, age 17, has a lot of interests. His latest hobby is baking.

“I started baking when I was 15, and I haven’t given it up yet” he says. He loves to bake treats for his friends, and says that he’d like to learn to make crème brulee. “It’s hard to make,” Da’Shawn reports. Da’Shawn is considering a career as a pastry chef, but given all his other interests, he’s not sure yet.

In addition to baking, when Da’Shawn is not in school, he enjoys playing sports particularly baseball and basketball. He follows Detroit sports teams, especially the Tigers, and has attended a Tigers game as well as seeing the Detroit Pistons play.

“I went to a U of M football game too,” Da’Shawn says and would like to attend the University of Michigan one day.

Another passion is music; Da’Shawn plays electric guitar and sings in a band that he and his friends started.

“We play rock music, like Nickelback, Papa Roach and Bush,” he says.

One of his favorite bands is Nickelback, and would like to tour with them someday. He’s also hoping to see them next time they tour. Da’Shawn’s favorite musician is Michael Jackson. “Nobody can touch his music!” he exclaims. He saw the Michael Jackson movie, “This is It” and was inspired to learn most of the famous singer’s dance moves.

A junior in high school, Da’Shawn’s favorite subject is math. Although he claims that he doesn’t enjoy writing or reading, his caseworker says that he’s becoming a better reader every year. He enjoys The Hunger Games books, and is looking forward to seeing the latest Hunger Games movie.

Da’Shawn was removed from his birth home when he was a toddler, and subsequently lived with relatives. Due to allegations of abuse, he and his sisters were removed from that home and Da’Shawn entered foster care. His adoption worker reports that Da’Shawn is in counseling to deal with his early traumas, and to learn coping skills. He’s also behind his peers in terms of academic and social skills.

Prospective parents will need to be committed to continuing Da’Shawn’s counseling. They will also need to be strong advocates for him at school, as Da’Shawn needs extensive educational support. According to his caseworker, “Da’Shawn requires a structured and committed family that is patient, supportive, firm, nurturing and experienced with individuals with special needs. The family should be willing and able to ensure that he continues to participate in after-care services.”

His caseworker says that Da’Shawn would likely do well in any type of family, but would probably thrive with older siblings that he could look up to. Da’Shawn would like a family that is active and sports-oriented. “I want a family that will take me to games, like a basketball or baseball game,” he says.

He’s a budding musician and wants a family that will support his musical aspirations. He also wants a mom that will be able to cook with him. He’d like to live in the city, and would like to have a pet; he’d like a parakeet or a bird that will talk. Da’Shawn would also like a big dog, like a shepherd.

“I want to stay in Grand Rapids,” Da’Shawn requests. He has friends here and likes the community. He enjoys Craig’s Cruisers because, as he puts it, “I’m the champion of laser tag – I’m unstoppable.”

His caseworker also describes Da’Shawn as someone who is initially shy around strangers, but once he gets to know someone “he becomes your best friend.” Da’Shawn is also praised for being someone who is good at helping his peers when they are upset or troubled, and is often one who others look to for sympathetic ear.

If you have room in your home, and heart, for this beautiful child, please contact Katie Simmons, Lutheran Adoption Service, at (616) 356-1934 or by email at

Administrator’s Note: What a great young man! I hope that he gets the family that he needs and all his hearts desires! Let’s keep him in our prayers. CP ♥

Youth Band Golden Hands Wins First Place $100,000 Prize At Music Festival Performing Earth Song And Other Tunes

Source: Newsday – By Corey Connelly

Members of Golden Hands, winners of the $100,000 first prize of the National Steelpan Music Festival's Pan Is Beautiful XII which took place at the National Academy for the Performing Arts, in Port-of-Spain, on Friday night. Author: Azlan Mohammed

Members of Golden Hands, winners of the $100,000 first prize of the National Steelpan Music Festival’s Pan Is Beautiful XII which took place at the National Academy for the Performing Arts, in Port-of-Spain, on Friday night.
Author: Azlan Mohammed

Building on its memorable performance two weeks ago, the youthful band, Golden Hands, narrowly won the ensemble segment of the National Steelpan Music Festival’s Pan Is Beautiful XII at the National Academy for the Performing Arts, in Port-of-Spain, on Friday night.

In addition to the ensemble’s mandatory test piece, Black Stalin’s “Respect The Steelpan,” the San Fernando-based band, delivered a pore-raising performance of Michael Jackson’s “Earth Song” to take home the whopping $100,000 first prize.

An impressive feature of Golden Hands’ presentation, which received an overwhelmingly positive response from the audience, was its members’ ability to use instruments to reflect the sounds of the elements.

For its efforts, the band, which had won the preliminary round of competition a fortnight ago, received 542 points in Friday’s competition, beating its closest competitor, Petrotrin Hatters by a mere point.

Also hailing from the southland, Hatters, too, won the approval of the audience for its rendition of The Renewal, composed by Dr Jeannine Remy. The band received $75,000.

Stryke Stars, which placed third with the Kenneth Guppy-composed “Journey To The Promised Land,” got 523 points and a handsome sum of $65,000. Making up the standings for the remainder of the finalists were Fusion Steel (520 points), Success Stars Gems (517 points) and Longdenville Claytones. The bands walked away with $60,000, $55,000 and $40,000, respectively.

Golden Hands was also in winner’s row in the highly-competitive soloist category as one of its key players, Joshua Jabari Beddoe, 16, clinched the $10,000 first prize with his tune of choice “Call Me Hero”. Scoring 280 points, Beddoe, the current National Under 15 champion of the Trinidad and Tobago Music Festival, got $10,000.

Coming in second and third, respectively, with 278 and 267 points, were ace players, Keisha and Khari Codrington, of the Codrington Pan Family.

Keisha, who performed first in the soloist category, delivered a haunting rendition of Lord Kitchener’s “Pan In Harmony,” to claim the $8,000 second prize. Her talented brother, who received $7,000, chose “Pan Night & Day,”another Kitchener composition, as his tune of choice.

Bishops High School student Avery Attzs, of Tobago Serenity Vibes came in fourth with “Caught In a Loop,” while Kern Sumerville, of the Police Steel Ensemble, placed fifth Kitchener’s “Rainorama.”

CAL Invaders player Anthony Phillip, 23, who performed Arddin Herbert’s “La Vie Sur La Paix”, grabbed sixth spot and took home $3,000.

Also receiving $3,000 for placing seventh and eight, respectively, were Tobago player Dachelle Morrison, of Tobago Serenity Vibes, with “Fiddle Faddle” and Meagan Taitt, of the Fascinators Pan Symphony. She played the Nigel Diaz-composed “Written In August”.

The finalists in Friday night’s competition were selected two weeks ago from among ten and 21 competitors in the respective ensemble and solo categories at the preliminary round of the competition held at the Queen’s Park Savannah in Port-of-Spain.

Here’s a video of a past performance earlier this year:,186292.html


Lakehouse Music Academy In Asbury Park Teaches Kids How To Rock

Administrator’s Note: Though Michael is not mentioned much in the article, I find it to be very much in line with his love of music and children, especially since he started in music when he was a just a baby.  I think that Michael would have been ideal as a music teacher or as an administrator for a program like this had he not been famous. Very positive article. CP ♥

Source: Asbury Park Press – By Bonnie Delaney   

Steven Franklin, 13, Annandale, on bass guitar, leads Lakehouse Music Academy students during a lesson. Singing (at left) is Treshaun Pilgrim, 11, Asbury Park. In the back (from left) are: Noah Lipton, 14, Ocean Township; Oswaldo Rojas, 11, Asbury Park; Holly Potter, 15, Upper Freehold; Jessica Brinkerhoff, 13, Clinton; and Tanya Pena, 13, Asbury Park. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Steven Franklin, 13, Annandale, on bass guitar, leads Lakehouse Music Academy students during a lesson. Singing (at left) is Treshaun Pilgrim, 11, Asbury Park. In the back (from left) are: Noah Lipton, 14, Ocean Township; Oswaldo Rojas, 11, Asbury Park; Holly Potter, 15, Upper Freehold; Jessica Brinkerhoff, 13, Clinton; and Tanya Pena, 13, Asbury Park. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

ASBURY PARKIt’s 4 p.m. on a Wednesday afternoon and the joint is jumpin’.

Eleven-year-old Ethan Kautz of Ocean Grove heads into one of seven private practice rooms at the Lakehouse Music Academy in Asbury Park for his 45-minute drum lesson.

Ethan later emerges from his lesson and enters the large rehearsal room with a stage, a drum kit, microphones, amplifiers and large glass windows so parents can watch. He is joined by seven more young musicians, including two keyboardists who wander in when they are done with their lessons.

Then, music director Albie Monterrosa takes over as the students learn to play Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean.”

“How many measures of drums are there before the bass comes in?” he asks. The answer: two bars, and then there is the guitar riff.

“What’s a riff?” Monterrosa asks them. Answer: a phrase of notes or a phrase of a melody that gets put together and is played over and over throughout the song.

Albie Monterrosa instructs students during a group lesson at Lakehouse Music Academy in Asbury Park. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Albie Monterrosa instructs students during a group lesson at Lakehouse Music Academy in Asbury Park. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Ethan is one of 130 students from throughout the area who have come to learn music at the academy, which opened this past March.

“He started lessons this summer and loved it so much that he wanted to come back during the school year,” said his mother, Tina Plantamura.

“When we saw them on stage and the connection he had with the other musicians and his brothers, I knew this is something that is good for them,” she said. “They are learning patience, appreciation and grace, as well as how to work with other musicians in a band.”

Musical mission

The musical mission of the academy – which was founded by Jon Leidersdorff, a musician, commercial composer, producer and engineer – is to engage and enrich students through musical education by promoting performance, composition, collaboration and scholarship.


Lakehouse Music Academy owner and musician Jon Leidersdorff looks on as students practice during a group music lesson. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Leidersdorff said his goal for Lakehouse was to create the infrastructure to keep Asbury Park an important player in the music scene, hence his vision to build a top-notch facility where you can learn to play guitar, drums or keyboard from working rock musicians, play in a band, rehearse for your next gig, buy a new or used instrument, record in one of two state-of-the art recording studios, or even stay in an apartment on site if you are playing a concert in Asbury.

The three-story building overlooking Wesley Lake underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation over several years that transformed it from a vacant warehouse to what it is now. Leidersdorff declined to divulge the exact cost of the renovation and accoutrements, but added that musicians from all over the world would love to record in the studios designed by prolific studio designer John Storyk, which feature recording gear like the 1972 class A Neve 8024.

“The studios feature 800-pound doors lined with concrete to aid in soundproofing and there are 35 vintage amplifiers, a guitar collection, and a conservatory grand piano C7,” he said.

Lessons are offered in guitar, bass, vocals, drums, piano, harmonica and string and woodwind instruments. There are multiple programs, including the cadet program for ages 6 months to 6 years, the “Get Started” program for ages 6 and up, the core program, a college prep program, songwriting, adult group sessions and an introduction to audio engineering.

“It’s awesome. I have such a love for teaching kids to play music and seeing them get it and work together,” said Monterrosa, a singer, songwriter and recording artist who is the founder of deSol, a rock band with a Latino vibe. His band toured nationally for seven years, sharing marquees and tours with bands such as R.E.M., Blues Traveler, Los Lobos, The Legendary Wailers and Widespread Panic.

He points out one of the brand new students on the stage.

“Oswaldo just walked in today and he is already playing chords (on a guitar),” Monterossa said.

Special workshops

There are also special workshops, including the Rebel Girls program which runs through Jan. 24 from 4 to 7 p.m. on Fridays for girls ages 9 to 18. The goal of the program, being taught by Maggie Pakutka, is to empower female students through music education that features creativity, collaboration and self-confidence. The format includes a private lesson and a group lesson with the goal of having the student bands perform at the Big Gig, a live performance event that will be taking place Jan. 26 at the Stone Pony.

Pierre Michel, 12, of Neptune plays drums during a group lesson at Lakehouse Music Academy in Asbury Park. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Pierre Michel, 12, of Neptune plays drums during a group lesson at Lakehouse Music Academy in Asbury Park. / MARY FRANK/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

A Broadway Intensive on Sundays that started Oct. 20 is being directed by Theresa Fowler and features guest instructors such as Constantine Maroulis, a Tony Award nominee for best actor in a musical for “Rock of Ages” and “American Idol” finalist.

The Songwriter Series that runs through Jan. 6 is directed by Allie Moss, a musician and songwriter from the Jersey Shore, with guest instructors such as Glen Burtnik, Charlotte Sometimes, Bess Rogers, and Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers.

David Ades, the Lakehouse marketing director, said the academy is also accepting tax-deductible donations from individuals, groups or companies who would like to sponsor a promising student for the music program.

“We have several students who are already taking lessons due to generous donors and hope to launch a program to encourage more contributions,” he said.

12-Year-Old Dancer Says MJ Is His Role Model, Wants to Start Dance School For Disadvantage Kids

Source: The Hindu

First love: Shree Shravan says his parents gave many options to choose from, "but dancing happened naturally." Photo: Murali Kumar K

First love: Shree Shravan says his parents gave many options to choose from, “but dancing happened naturally.” Photo: Murali Kumar K

Dance is like the air I breathe” says Shree Shravan. The Std. VI student spends his after-school hours practising Hip-Hop and B-Boying. At just 12 years, Shree is well-versed in several genres and styles of western and Indian classical dance, and has a collection of accolades to boot.

It was at a dance event at a mall that Shree’s talent was discovered. His parents took the cue to find him a tutor and nurture his interest. Then began the intensive training. His teacher, Lourd Vijay, took Shree under his wings and saw the shy boy transform into a confident artiste.

Winning the Silver Medal for Hip-Hop and Bronze for National Folk amongst 28 countries at the Dance World Cup held at London last year came as no surprise. Now, after months of rigorous practice and having honed his skills at professional competitions, Shree is confident about taking part in the next edition of the Dance World Cup due to be held in Portugal in June 2014.

With an immaculate record in academics and deep interest in science, Shree also claims to enjoy cooking and sketching. “My parents gave many options to choose from… but dancing happened naturally.”

"My parents gave many options to choose from but dancing happened naturally," says Shree Shravan. - Photo: Murali Kumar K.

“My parents gave many options to choose from but dancing happened naturally,” says Shree Shravan. – Photo: Murali Kumar K.


His vacations, he says, are spent learning new forms, working out and practising for hours. “But, I have no complaints, I feel relaxed and energised.” If ballet adds grace to his posture, other forms of training give him flexibility and technique, he says.

Michael Jackson is his role model, says Shree who reveres him for his originality and skill that made him a global icon. “I want to be known as the second Michael Jackson.”

Shree hopes also to start a dance school to train children from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and those have no resources to pursue their passion. “Dancing can be an expensive passion to pursue and train in, it requires lot of dedication and time,” says his mother.

But Shree’s efforts have paid off, she adds. “He was down with high fever last year and had to perform at the International Salsa festival. But neither the cold weather nor the irksome flu deterred him from performing and he bagged the first place.”

DC Students Surprise Downtown Passersby With Rendition of ‘Thriller’

Source: Washington Post – By Emma Brown


Emma Brown/The Washington Post – Savoy Elementary Students drew a crowd of smiling passersby Wednesday with their zombie costumes and their street performance of “Thriller” outside the Old Post Office Pavilion.

Dozens of pint-sized zombies descended on downtown Washington on Wednesday afternoon, drawing a crowd of smiling passersby with their Halloween-appropriate rendition of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”

Charmaine McDuffie grinned as she walked past the performance on Pennsylvania Avenue, in front of the Old Post Office Pavilion. “They are so cute!” said McDuffie, who works down the street at the Environmental Protection Agency. It’s nice, she said, “to see kids doing some positive stuff.”

 The zombies were students at Anacostia’s Savoy Elementary, a long-struggling school in one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods. Principal Patrick Pope is using art as an anchor to transform the school, betting that an infusion of dance, music, theater and visual arts have the power to engage students and lift overall achievement.

The children suited up in costumes and makeup Wednesday and rode the Metro across the Anacostia River for their street performance.


(Emma Brown/The Washington Post) – Kechelle Settle, wearing one Michael Jackson-esque glove, leads the Thriller performance.

Flash-mob dancing is becoming a tradition at Savoy, and one that kids work hard for and anticipate eagerly, said Michael Weems, Savoy’s dance teacher and choreographer. “It’s great to see these kids grab on to something and be excited,” said Weems, who grew up in Southeast Washington and knows where his students are coming from.

Nine-year-old Kechelle Settle led the Thriller performance, pulling on one Michael Jackson-esque glove and dancing solo before her classmates, lying zombified on the ground, arose to join her.

Her mother, Carla Settle, looked on, capturing the moment on her cellphone. She said the school’s arts focus, including Saturday rehearsals, has been a boon for her daughter, teaching determination and perseverance alongside singing and dancing.

“She loves going to school. She just comes home so enthused … this is her motivation,” Settle said.

Steps away, Australians Lam Bui and Christina Lim, in town for an engineering conference, stopped to take photographs. “This is fantastic!” said Bui. “A very nice surprise.”

Alberta Boy’s Michael Jackson Moves Help Children in Need

Source: Streetinsider


Brooklin Jacobs, a 13-year-old resident of the Tsuu T’ina First Nation reserve in Calgary, Alberta, recently commemorated Aboriginal Treaty Day – a reaffirmation of Aboriginal rights – with a $1,500 donation to Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) and Make a Wish Foundation. The boy raised the money by performing his Michael Jackson dance moves in front of an eager crowd at Sarcee Seven Chiefs Sportsplex.

“I performed the concert, because I want to help other children and make their lives better,” said Brooklin, a grade 7 student at the Tsuu T’ina Junior/Senior high school.

At the age of 9, after watching a Michael Jackson music video together with his brother, Brooklin became an ardent fan of Jackson’s music and performances. Since then, the boy has entertained peers and the local community and recently decided he wanted to use his dance performances for a worthy cause.

A family tradition of giving back

Brooklin’s gesture is in keeping with his family’s tradition of giving back to the community. The family has donated to charities in the past to help children on the Tsuu T’ina Nation reserve and overseas. Brooklin hopes to continue singing and dancing for charity.

Judi Jacobs, Brooklin’s grandmother, is proud of her grandson’s efforts, “because the fundraiser was all his idea”. She said Brooklin wanted to ensure the money raised went to worthy children’s causes. The family chose Christian Children’s Fund of Canada as a recipient organization because of its worldwide reach. “We saw the work of CCFC on TV and were impressed by the commitment to help children in need,” said Ms. Jacobs.

Organizing the fundraiser was not easy for the family, but everyone pitched in to support Brooklin’s compassion for children.

“In the end, we are proud of him and overwhelmed by his commitment to help others,” said Ms. Jacobs, who is distressed by any tragedy that touches people, including recent flooding in Calgary and the train explosion in Quebec. “It hurts to see children suffering. We need to be more generous and share with others in need.”

Emily Dawson, Director of Fund Development for Christian Children’s Fund of Canada, said Brooklin’s donation was an uplifting act of kindness. “I was moved by his gift for children. It is a special act of kindness, and demonstrates a strong understanding of his role in promoting ‘global citizenship’ for a child of his age.”

Christian Children’s Fund of Canada is a member of the ChildFund Alliance, a worldwide group of 12 child-focused development organizations working in 58 countries to implement long-lasting and meaningful changes for children and families. For more than 50 years, CCFC has helped children and families of all faiths break the cycle of extreme poverty by helping them develop the skills and resources to overcome poverty and pursue justice.

For more information, visit

To view the image associated with this press release, please visit the following link:

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: For interview opportunities, please contact: Christian Children’s Fund of Canada Teresia (Terry) Mutuku, Manager, Communications Toll-free: 1-800-263-5437 Ext. 221 Local: 905-754-1010 Ext. 221

Luyempire Records Announces The Release Of 12 Year Old Prodigy David Le Princes’ Debut Album “Girlfriend”.

Source: Urban Music News Network


The record contains 12 original songs written by various well-known songwriters and features stellar performances from this young multi-talented emerging artist. “Girlfriend” is arranged and produced by Pat Luyeye, David’s Manager Dad, and also the President of the independent label.

David Le Prince is not your ordinary 12 year old urban pop artist. His multi-talents closely mimic pop icon Michael Jackson, only with his own unique styling. Major record labels will soon be taking notice, if they haven’t already. 

With the successful EP “Where You At?” securely under his belt, and the emergence of his new original pop album, he is destined for history-making stardom.

The new CD from David Le Prince is now available for download on iTunes and other retail digital music portals. To follow the career of this up and coming young pop artist you can visit his official website at

About  David

David Luyeye (AKA David Le Prince) was born September 21, 2000 in Dallas, Texas, USA. His mother Michaella Bonose Luyeye is from Paris France, while his father Pat Luyeye, better known as “The Genius”, is of African descent from the Democratic Republic of Congo. At age 3 David moved to Paris with his family, where he resided for 6 years, developing a strong international background.

By age 6, David was already teaching himself to sing by watching and listening to Michael Jackson, Usher, Chris Brown and numerous other singers on YouTube. How could such an amazing talent emerge with no formal training – this could only happen because David was truly a natural. David’s been entertaining since his elementary school days.

In 2010, when David was 9years Old, his family moved back to Oklahoma City in the United States. His dream was to become just like Michael Jackson, so he asked his father Pat Luyeye to help him. His Father “Pat Luyeye” said, “I want you to be a man after your own. Nevertheless you can model after Michael Jackson and other music icons.”

Pat Luyeye gave David his first laptop and showed him how to use media contents like YouTube, VIMEO, and MySpace, so he could learn more about melodies, harmonies, style, and dance.

It wouldn’t take long before David Le Prince began to quickly make his way to stardom. In spring of 2010, the American Mall Model Talent Search was held in Oklahoma City and audiences enjoyed his Michael Jackson footwork. He was signed as a Young Model but the family relocated to Dallas, Texas.

In June 2010 David Le Prince along with his brother “Tim Fresh” in the background, recorded and released his debut demo album “I Need A Friend “– It’s no surprise that David’s debut album created a strong buzz in Dallas Texas, in his local community, and among friends and families – after all David Le Prince wasn’t just good, he was a prodigy about to come forward!


David Le Prince’s sound is broadly inspired by the early Michael Jackson, Usher, Chris Brown and B2K. But it is described as unique – classic R&B with an international French flavor thanks to David’s time spent in Paris, France. David Started his music journey with his own original songs.

Album Covers Preview

These covers were created by 13 year old Max Farrell. He was adopted from Russia at 13 months into a large family. Matt enjoys photography, art, writing, paddle-boarding, tubing, swimming and skiing. Click reblogging link to see more. Great job Matt!


Celebration of Black Music Month: Cameron Sherman covers Jackson Five’s “I Wanna Be Where You Are”

Source: Eurthisnthat

Cameron Sherman is an 11-year-old singer

Cameron Sherman is an 11-year-old singer

The month of June is Black Music Month and we want to celebrate it with identifying new, upcoming, and undiscovered talents that we think enhance black music.

Some of our most coveted treasures in the realm of black music is Stevie Wonder, Prince, Michael Jackson, Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, just to name a few. But while the radio may lead us to believe that black music is dying a slow death, it is alive and strong in new and upcoming artists that continue the legacy of feeding the soul.

So today we want to bring you a talented 11-year-old singer named Cameron Sherman that is not cutting an album…as far as we know, but is probably far more talented than anyone in the studio today. In fact, we don’t know if he’s been discovered by any major music companies. We’ve only seen him in home videos. We hope someone sees him soon because he really does embody the talent of Michael Jackson.

We also want to thank former President Jimmy Carter for launching Black Music month June 7, 1979, that President Obama observes as African-American Music Appreciation Month. Either title is fine as long as it is accompanied by good music from African-American artists.

Check him out!

-J.C. Brooks

Cameron Sherman covers Jackson Five’s “I Wanna Be Where You Are”

Cameron Sherman covers Bruno Mars “When I was Your Man”

DON’T MISS THIS KID, Unsigned Artist David Le Prince, Song and Video, “Where You At” (Sampling The Jackson’s 5, “I Want You Back”)

Source: The Lowe Down

David Luyeye (AKA David Le Prince) was born September 21, 2000 in Dallas, Texas, USA. His mother Michaella Bonose Luyeye is from Paris, France, while his father Pat Luyeye, better known as “The Genius”, is of African descent from the Democratic Republic of Congo. At age 3 David moved to Paris with his family, where he resided for 6 years, developing a strong international background.

In 2010, when David was 9 years Old, his family moved back to Oklahoma City in the United States. His dream was to become just like Michael Jackson, so he asked his father Pat Luyeye to help him. His father said, “I want you to be a man after your own. Nevertheless you can model after Michael Jackson and other music icons.”

Willesden Schooboy To Play Michael Jackson In West End Musical

Source: Kilburn

Emmanuel Sakyi

A talented youngster from Willesden is celebrating after landing the role of a young Michael Jackson in a hit West End musical.

Emmanuel Sakyi, is one of four graduates from a prestigious academy aimed specifically at finding singers and dancers to perform in Thriller Live.

The musical, which is based on the songs by the King of Pop, will see Emmanuel portray Jackson during his early years and his time with the Jackson 5.

Emmanuel, who lives in Church Road and is a pupil at Ark Academy in Bridge Road, Wembley will entertain sell out crowds with much loved hits including I Want You Back and I’ll Be There.

Speaking to the Times, the nine-year-old’s mother Alison said she was “immensely proud.”

She said: “It’s all natural talent, before the academy he had never had singing or dancing lessons.

“He was always singing Michael Jackson songs on holiday and it’s always been a dream of his to perform his work.”

Producers for the show require around six boys at a time and have a high turnover because of singers’ voices breaking.

In November, they launched the Young Michael Jackson Academy to train young boys in a bid to find the next star.

Boys attend singing and dancing classes and after a three-month training period, hopefuls take part in an audition in front of the show’s creative team.

Debbie O’Brien, the musical’s casting director said: “We are looking for boys who are exciting, confident and energetic. “They have to be of black or dual heritage, aged nine to 13 with an excellent unbroken pop/rock voice with a high range.”

Emmanuel hailed his outgoing head teacher Jacqueline Steele as an inspiration, told the Times he was shocked when he found out he had been chosen.

He said: “I’m really excited it’s like a dream come true. Michael Jackson is one of my favourite artists he’s got a lovely voice and a great dancer.”

Emmanuel will be seen in the West End production from early next month.

Producers are also now looking for candidates for the next term at the MJ Academy.

To apply contact Debbie O’Brien on or phone 01462 742919.


Kids To Perform Michael Jackson Tribute For ‘Life Is A Cabaret’

Source: Siccipian  Village – By Jennifer Heshion


The Marion Junior Show Choir will perform a tribute to Michael Jackson (hence the gloves). Back row: Alexandria Strand, left, and Camryn Kidney. Middle row: Katherine Dwyer, left, Claire Barry, and Brianna Lynch. Front row: Caroline Owens, left, Erin Scott, Abby Wiksten, Jenna Gamache, and Bella Carrillo.

On Saturday, the choir will perform a series of songs by Michael Jackson as one of the many acts of the church’s “Life is a Cabaret” variety show. Other acts include covers of songs by the Beatles and Queen as well as jazz and classical music.

The event has been organized by church members Cassandra Morgan and Jamie Wiksten as a fundraiser for the church’s annual Christmas Cantata in December.

Of the performers, Morgan said, “Most of the participants either play or sing in the Cantata. They’re giving back. I think everyone is having a good time doing it. It’s a volunteer effort by the community to help the church.”

It was the kids who chose to do a tribute to the King of Pop. All big fans of Jackson’s work, they said the hardest part was narrowing down their set list to a handful of songs.

“It’s been a whole lot of fun,” said choir member Claire Barry. “We all really want to sing.”

The show also gave the girls a chance to show off their dance moves.

“We have a lot of dancers in the group,” Wiksten said. “I really rely on my dancers to guide the others.”

As for the kids, being prepared is key to getting those tricky dance moves down pat.

“Practice, practice, practice is what I say,” said choir member Bella Carrillo.

All budding entertainers, the girls say they would like to be performers when they grow up.

“Performing is my life,” said choir member Abby Wiksten. “I’m going to be Hollywood.”

“Life is a Cabaret” will open on Saturday, March 23, at the First Congregational Church of Marion’s Community Center at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 for general seating and $15 for table seating. Tickets are available at The Bookstall in Marion and the Marion General Store. For more information, call Cassandra Morgan at 508-942-6483.

Administrator’s Note:  Children love Michael because they know that he loved them deeply from the heart.  CP ♥

Our Lady of the Hamptons Students Tap to ‘Smooth Criminal’

Source: Southhampton Patch

Our Lady of the Hamptons  Catholic School tap dancers performed at the That’s Entertainment Performing Arts Competition in Smithtown over the weekend. Seven students, dressed in Prohibition era costumes, did a routine to Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.”

The OLH tap program is led by first grade teacher and dance instructor Elyse Madsen Curro.

The senior group won a first place solid gold for “Smooth Criminal” and second place overall high score for level 1 junior division! 

The juniors won a high gold for their performance of “Hit the Road Jack,” and received the “polished performance” award.

Fourth-grader Tommy Wilkie won a first place platinum, the high score of the entire level 1 junior dividion and the “hot stepper” award.

The OLH tap dancers will perform during the Hampton Bays St. Patrick’s Day Parade Saturday.

14-Year-Old Musical Prodigy Ahsan Covers The Jackson 5′s ‘Who’s Lovin’ You’ (VIDEO)

Source: Huffington Post

Meet 14-year-old Ahsan Watts – known professionally as just ‘Ahsan’ – who’s about to make your jaw drop firmly towards to the floor.

As you’ll discover from the video above, he’s got one hell of a voice, and as you can tell from his choice of a Jackson 5 track (1969′s Who’s Lovin’ You) to cover, he’s a bit of a Michael Jackson fan.

Perhaps one of the many reasons he’s partial to the King Of Pop is because of this voice of his, what with it sounding astonishingly – almost impossibly – like young MJ from the late ’60s and early ’70s.

Click play on the video above to see (well, hear) what we mean, and when you’re done with that, check out this introductory video from this recording label, Interscope Records.

And for another gifted musical youngster, check out Ethan here below, who’s just six years old and already playing Coldplay with the best of them.