Ed Balint The Repository
Published 2:11 a.m ET Feb 3, 2022
CANTON — EN-RICH-MENT recognized local musicians, artists and others with its annual awards.
Betty Smith, executive director of EN-RICH-MENT, said she established the awards in 2019 to honor those who make a positive impact in the arts locally. Marking its 10th anniversary this year, the organization gave out the awards at a recent event.
"It's to celebrate all of the arts," she said. "It's the music, it's theater."
"EN-RICH-MENT is for youth ages 5 to 18," Smith said of the Canton-based fine arts academy. "And it's a place where they can come and find themselves in the arts, because some of these young people, they come here and they don't even think they have talent.
"And we're a safe haven. We're a family away from family."
2021 Fine Art Award recipients honored in December were:
O'Jays Award: The Singing Wonders, part of Canton's gospel singing community for more than 60 years.
Ayani Joy Buckmon Music Educator of the Year: Coach Robert Newman of the Steamm Academy with Canton City Schools.
Macy Gray Rising Star Award:Rachel Crozier, vocalist of The Scenic Route.
Spotlight Award: Norma Capocci, who works with children who have disabilities; also founded Camp Jukebox, an outreach program of The North Canton Playhouse for those with special needs who learn drama, singing and dance.
Art Award: De'Jhone Barnes, a student at the Steamm Academy.
Dance Award: Karla Neff, founder of Canton Elite, and Stacie Morgan, of the Ordered Steps Dance Company.
Theater Award: Lois DiGiacomo-Jacobson and Kathy Mitchell, who founded Rainbow Repertory.
Anton Milini Guitar Award: Willis Gordon, local musician.
Cindy Lazor Community Advocate Award: Will Dent, president and CEO of ABCD Inc., a nonprofit community development agency with energy conservation and transportation programs assisting low-income and elderly residents. Some programs also assist veterans and those released from prison.
ABCD also has led housing projects for the elderly in Canton and Massillon.
Reach Ed at 330-580-8315 and email@example.com. On Twitter: @ebalintREP
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