Thanksgiving will be a celebratory day for teens who are part of the Be the Star You Are!® charity’s radio program, Express Yourself!™ One year ago on November 22, teen coach and radio producer, Cynthia Brian along with high school senior, Steven Zhou and Los Angeles teen, Chan Dara Paschal, launched the new teen program, Express Yourself!™ They introduced the STAR on-air reporters consisting of locals Courtney Cheng, Vivien Lee, Jacqueline Tao, Eric Pawlakos, and Rachel Glass to the Voice America Kids Network.
In the summer of 2011, Network Director for World Talk Radio, Brandy Jackson, and Network Director for Voice America Kids had approached Cynthia Brian, a long time producer and host of Starstyle®-Be the Star You Are!® on World Talk Radio (http://www.voiceamerica.com/worldtalkradio/vshow.aspx?sid=764), to see if she’d be interesting in creating a teen radio show for the fledgling Voice America Kids Network. Cynthia’s specialty for over two decades has been coaching teens for acting, writing, and presentations and she is the author of the award winning book, Be the Star You Are!® for Teens. As the Founder and Executive Director of Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3 literacy and positive media charity (http://www.BetheStarYouAre.org), Cynthia was already mentoring young people. She jumped at the opportunity and the rest is history.
Since the first air date of November 22, 2011, Express Yourself!™ teens have broadcast a fresh new show every Tuesday at NOON PT at http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself. Under the astute direction of Perry Damone and engineering from Cornelius Hanna and Bruce Solsten, the program has become a favorite on the network and in the world. The purpose of Express Yourself!™ (http://www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com)is to give teens a voice and empower them to express their opinions while being true to themselves.. It didn’t take long before experts, authors, sports figures, and celebrities from around the globe were being interviewed. The tagline for the show, “Where teens talk and the world listens!” has become a self-fulfilling prophecy with the on-air STAR team expanding to include teen contributors from around the country.
Last June when host Steven Zhou graduated, Miramonte junior, Youngjoo Ahn moved into the main host position. When asked about her experience in being on the radio, Youngjoo enthusiastically replied, “ I never thought I’d be published in the newspaper nor be the host of the a top rated teen radio program in the world, but because of the mentorship of Cynthia Brian and Be the Star You Are!®, I am living the dream.” Other team members feel the same. Alex Pawlakos is grateful to Be the Star You Are!® charity for allowing him to use “his interest in economics while being a reporter on Express Yourself!™” Steven Zhou remains the administrator for the program and continues to co-host when he’s available. He praises the Express Yourself!™ platform as providing real life experience for youth.
Cynthia Brian (http://www.CynthiaBrian.com) may be best known to radio audiences through her program, Starstyle® Be the Star You Are!® (http://www.voiceamerica.com/worldtalkradio/vshow.aspx?sid=764)which has been broadcasting live weekly since 1998. Cynthia is also a New York Times best seling author of six books, including Chicken Soup for the Gardener’s Soul. Besides plants, Cynthia grows people. “Writing and producing Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio is a labor of love. It’s incredibly gratifying to witness the transformation of these teens as they journey from shy and guarded, to open, conversational, and professional. It’s the metamorphose of teenage butterflies.”
Caie Kelley is the pop culture reporter and also a frequent co-host. She exclaims: “Being on the radio and heard in 192 countries is an opportunity for growth that not many adolescents get to experience.” Other segment reporters from California include Mason Windatt, Izzy Fasheh, and Ryan Sims joined by Floridian contributor, Nicole Eubanks (who began as an eighth grader), Katelyn Darrow in New Jersey, Clare Durant in Indiana, and Tanner O’Dell in Texas. Katelyn adds “Being the #1 on the network in the world program challenges us to continue excellent reporting to best serve our international audience.” Katelyn founded Angels of God Clothing Closet when she was just thirteen. Her organization and Be the Star You Are!® have joined forces to help the victims of the East Coast super storm with Operation Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief. file://localhost/(http/::btsya.com:hurricane_sandy_relief.html)
Modern technology plays a huge part in the success of Express Yourself!™ as it is pre-recorded via Skype then airs on Tuesdays at NOON PT on the Voice America Kids Network. Hosts and reporters are responsible for researching and writing the scripts as well as suggesting topics and guests of interest to teens. One of the perks of being a host or reporter on the program has been the ability to meet heroes, legends, and best selling authors. Youngjoo sums up the feelings of the on-air team: “This is the best training ground in the world and so much fun! We are all grateful to Be the Star You Are!® charity, Cynthia Brian, and Voice America Kids Network for giving us this opportunity.”
Tune in any time at http://www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com or listen Tuesdays at NOON PT at http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself.
For more information about Be the Star You Are!® charity or the Express Yourself!™ creative Community, visit http://www.BTSYA.com. To sponsor the program, become a guest, or audition as a teen reporter, email BTSYATeenRadio@gmail.com.
Causes Cynthia Brian Supports
Be the Star You Are! 501 c3 charity empowering women, families, and youth through improved literacy, positive media, and life skills.