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Self-Taught Prodigy

Jasmine Boyens, Feature Editor

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Some students may recognize the self-taught singer and pianist from the Winter Showcase and news reporter for the school video announcements, Cameron Gonzalez. Senior at Oak Ridge is all but untalented and has performed several times at the school talent show.

Cameron Gonzalez sang his own arrangement of hallelujah by Leonard Cohen, as well as played the piano at the Winter Showcase. But this was not his first time performing at Oak Ridge. Both this year and last year, Gonzalez collaborated with other students to perform at the Talent Show.

Gonzalez is also part of the TV production/video news staff at Oak Ridge. Jenevieve Jackson, a video production teacher said “Cameron is the type of student who puts 100% effort into everything. He is great on camera, he is great when performing, said Jackson “ He is a critical thinker and he engages with other students, very very well.”

Gonzalez began playing his first instrument, the piano when he was 10 and has since prospered in his natural talent. Although he began to play instruments at a young age, Gonzalez had only discovered his ability to sing when he was 14 years old.

When auditioning for a role in his theater class he had gotten a lead role that required him to sing. After all of the panic and one of his most nervous performances, Gonzalez discovered his ability to sing and kept at it. He now plays several instruments, including, piano, guitar, bass, and he is learning to play drums.

Even now, Gonzalez has stage fright but has learned to become more comfortable when performing. Jackson also said, “If he is getting nervous, you wouldn’t know it by his performance because his performances have consistently been very very solid.”

Aside from anxious performances, Gonzalez has also had his fair share of embarrassing moments. For his 18th birthday, Cameron’s mom took him to a bar in Sanford, to play on stage. In Between songs, he would talk to the small crowd in order to keep their attention.

“I thought it would be funny to ask the crowd, “who was hammered” just because it was a bunch of old people sitting at the bar,” says Gonzalez as he recalled the embarrassing moment. He described the audible groan that came from the unamused audience and his embarrassment afterward.

Some may argue that Cameron Gonzalez has the potential to make a career out of his glorified talent and love for playing music but he still has his priorities set on going to college for economics.

“I wanna learn how money works. So if I ever do decide to make the jump and become my own artist I’ll know how to manage my own money,” said Gonzalez.

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Self-Taught Prodigy