A Star Is Born

Article excerpt

Successful futures are not a given for students in the New Jersey suburb of East Orange. But the Gordon Parks Academy helps kids reach for the stars. Here, Television Production teacher David Balaban shares the story of one student.

The access ten year old Tamirah has to cutting edge technologies at the Gordon Parks Academy of Radio, Animation, Film and Television in East Orange, New Jersey, has changed her life in many ways. At the pre-K-6 school, named after the first African American film director, Tamirah auditioned for the part of a television reporter and contributes regularly to the weekly television news show, Gordon Parks Academy News. She operates the teleprompter and uses non linear editing software. She has found a way to channel her overflowing classroom energy in a positive direction and now has a way to show off her talents as a television reporter and digital storyteller. She has assembled a demonstration reel of interviews with dignitaries (such as the town mayor) which she conducted and edited. This reel has helped her get outside acting and performing jobs. She recently sang the national anthem at a New York Knicks basketball game as a result of the experience working with technology at our school. …