20 Under 20

A celebration of the next generation

This exercise started with a list of known quantities: kids we’ve written about in the last two years because their talents were getting attention on the national level. Most famously, there was Bryce Harper, the 19-year-old baseball phenom now in the Washington Nationals system; Dylan Kwasniewski, the 16-year-old racecar driver; and Shabazz Muhammad, the Bishop Gorman senior—our cover subject two issues ago—who is the nation’s No. 1 basketball recruit. We’ve also profiled several other phenoms, including 17-year-old boxer Berenice Hernandez and pre-teen painter Autumn de Forest. (Visit WeeklySeven.com to read all about them.)

A few months ago, upon taking notice of the number of homegrown prodigies, we wondered who else was out there. So we launched the “20 Under 20” campaign to find out. We sent letters out to private and public schools and asked our readership for nominations. We ended up with a healthy number of candidates (more than 40), but what impressed us most was the quality of them. Instead of the expected barrage of stage-mom drivel, the majority of submissions were well-thought-out. Even better, as you’ll see in the 20 finalists, these Las Vegas kids are more than one-dimensional talents; they’re well-rounded contributors to society.

Lastly, we certainly don’t consider this a “Top 20” list by any means. Judging from the ones who didn’t make the cut, there are plenty more out there. And judging from your enthusiasm, there will be a “20 Under 20” encore, so please e-mail your future nominations to comments@weeklyseven.com.

Suggested Next Read

Nicholas Greco, 9

Nicholas Greco, 9

His story: Nicholas has performed with a variety of Las Vegas headliners, including Mac King, Nathan Burton and Donny Osmond. His most recent gig is performing with Las Vegas Hilton headliner Steve Wyrick as the magician’s “mini me”—acting, dancing and helping with tricks onstage. He has performed in more than 20 local theater productions and modeled for designer Christian Audigier, as well as for several MAGIC clothing industry conventions. Nicholas has been in Summerlin Dance Academy regional and national competitions, doing everything from jazz to B-boy.