NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Many performers dream of making it to the Metropolitan Opera. But some kids are one step closer to that dream thanks to the “Yankee Diva.”
Metropolitan Opera star Joyce DiDonato has done it all. She’s won a Grammy, performed all over the world and sang the National Anthem at Game 7 of the World Series.
She’s known as America’s “Yankee Diva” for being so down to earth and loves volunteering to help the next generation of singers. This time, it’s high school students at a performing arts school on the Upper East Side.
“It inspires me when somebody else has made it and wants future little hers to make it as well,” 17-year-old Earnie Grant said.
DiDonato said this generation needs extra encouragement when it comes to the arts.
“They’re in a world full of video games and fast speed, nothing of depth,” she told CBS2’s Cindy Hsu. “We need their voices, we need their point-of-view, we need their creativity.”
DiDonato is teaching them skills that will translate to any career path including how to take the stage with energy, the power of a smile and how to express emotion through music.
“She actually made me connect to the song and I started to cry because I actually felt what she was telling me to feel,” Ashley Perez, 17, said.
“This isn’t about being a perfect singer, this is about letting us feel something and understand ourselves and the world around us better,” DiDonato said.
The famed singer said even if the students don’t pursue a career in music, the arts can open up a window to the world.
Right now, DiDonato is performing at The Met and the students will be able to see the opera live when it’s shown in movie theaters in 70 countries.