Navajo Teen Eager to Teach

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Emmanuel Gray Jr.

Emmanuel Gray Jr. taught himself to play the guitar from a book. hide caption

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Award Winner

Congratulations to Emmanuel Gray Jr., recipient of the Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award. Emmanuel will receive an award of $10,000 to help him continue his music studies and assist him with music-related needs.

Eighteen-year-old Emmanuel Gray Jr. has never had a private guitar lesson. He learned to play from a book after discovering the instrument through group lessons at his middle school.

Emmanuel lives on the Monument Valley Navajo reservation on the border of Utah and Arizona. He hopes to inspire other kids to take up music. "I plan to go to college and study music education," he says. "Once I've earned my degree I want to come back to the reservation and teach." Emmanuel plays "Recuerdos de Alhambra" by Francisco Tarrega.



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