Awards: Welcome The DreamYard Prep Chorus!

DYP Chorus

Standing (left to right): Josue Villanueva, Sharon Arreola, Huchela De La Cruz, Isaac Espinosa, Sandra Salifu, Justin Matos, Keana Rivera
Sitting (left to right): Fatou Diouf, Olivia Colon, Ana Carmona, and Grace Pagan

By Harold Goldberg

This year at the New York Game Awards, the awesome DreamYard Prep Chorus will be performing selections from our Tin Pan Alley Award for Best Music nominees. We know this group of 9th to 12th graders, led by educator Brandon Magid, is going to rock the house on January 24th.

They’re all excellent singers. In fact, when she was 12 years old, chorus member Huchela De La Cruz sang the National Anthem at a Mets game. And that’s just one standout of many.

As a non-profit organization, we’ve been honored to work with students at the DreamYard Project in the South Bronx.  The DreamYard is an Obama-administration lauded school, so important that they’ve been the subject of an in-depth New Yorker story.  At their DreamYard Prep School, we mentor students twice monthly and offer them scholarships, internships and field trips.

Each time Sherri Smith and I travel to the Bronx (along with game developers or our other New York Videogame Critics Circle journalists), we feel we get back more than we give. The students there are engaged and intelligent, and we’ve been privileged to get to know them.

Of our partnership, DreamYard Co-founder Tim Lord has said, “We believe that the arts and social justice education can help young people build pathways to opportunity. But it is only through partnerships like this, with a respected tech and business partner organization who believe our Bronx youth can be the next leaders in gaming and coding and design, that we can actually connect that pathway to lasting opportunity.”

We can’t wait to hear the DreamYard Prep Chorus at the New York Game Awards! You can get tickets for the ceremony right here.

Journalist/author Harold Goldberg is the Founder of the New York Videogame Critics Circle.

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