Sharon Daley-Johnson says she felt the power of music from an early age.
"I grew up listening to Handel's Messiah with my mother and various artists like Isaac Hayes and Bert Kaempfert, who you've probably never heard of and his orchestra," said Daley-Johnson.
Daley-Johnson is a performing arts teacher at The Riverside School for Makers and Artists.
During the day, she's inspiring the next generation of singers, actors, and musicians and it doesn't stop once the bell rings.
Daley-Johnson is the founder of "Reaching for the Arts," a non-profit after-school program for the performing arts.
Her dream was to give kids access to high-quality arts education outside of school, especially for those who may not be able to afford an instrument or private vocal lessons.
Here, children learn how to play the guitar, the violin, and sing, all taught by professionals in the field.
Daley-Johnson also helps students prep their portfolios for their applications to specialized arts high schools and colleges, and it doesn't cost a penny.
"Youth development is poorly represented in this area, and you're talking about the performing arts mecca of the world basically, in this area, and to not have that available was just unacceptable," said Daley-Johnson.
For many of her students, the program has proven invaluable, a ticket toward reaching their goals.
"Going to LaGuardia High School was definitely a dream come true. You don't see many people coming from the public houses over there getting into these great performing arts high schools because we don't really, most kids don't have the resources, so I definitely think that this program helped me get into LaGuardia," said Aaliyah Delorbe, a student of Reaching for the Arts.
Some of Daley-Johnson's students have gone on to perform on Broadway, others have movie roles.
"To go see them now acting, singing and performing, it's all worthwhile. It's just amazing to see and to keep the progress going and growing. Nothing's going to stop us, nothing is going to stop us," said Daley-Johnson.
For giving these students a chance in the spotlight, Sharon Daley-Johnson is our New Yorker of the Week.