Benjamin Schendler-Terry, a 13-year-old who attends the Brooklyn Free School in Clinton Hill, is one of three finalists in the Afterschool Awards competition in the Music and Arts category. Benjamin, a talented pianist with a love for jazz, has been playing since he was three.
Readers can help Benjamin take home the $2,500 prize by voting online for him at www.afterschoolawards.com
Inspired by Taj Mahal, Dave Brubeck, Scott Joplin and Ray Charles, Benjamin plays blues, jazz, ragtime and rock n' roll. He performs both solo and in a jazz trio, and dreams of forming a youth jazz band that will play all around the city.
Watch Benjamin play on YouTube.
Sponsored by JCP, Izod and NOW Music, the Afterschool Awards is a nationwide contest spotlighting and rewarding outstanding afterschool achievements for elementary, middle school and junior high school students. Student entered this free contest in up to four different categories: Science, Music and Arts, Sports and Community Service, and can earn up to $10,000 dollars ($2,500 per category) toward their future education.