Who will become Kid of the Year for 2021? The answer will be revealed on February 9 during a TV special on Nickelodeon. In the weeks leading up to the show, we’ll be introducing the top five nominees. Read on!
“Music is where everything started,” Samirah Horton says. She’s 13 and from Brooklyn, New York. Samirah is known to the world as DJ Annie Red. She has been performing and rapping since she was 6. Through music, DJ Annie Red says, “I can express myself.”
The rising hip-hop star uses music to talk about bullying. “I was bullied a lot,” she says. “I still am bullied now, especially because of my voice.” DJ Annie Red has a deep voice. She says people have told her she sounds like a boy.
But she rises above their insults. DJ Annie Red doesn’t think of her voice as a weakness. She uses it to spread a message far and wide. She encourages kids of all ages, everywhere, to stand up to bullying. “You’re never too young to make a change,” she says.
DJ Annie Red has performed at events and festivals. She is the “kid resident DJ” for Brooklyn’s pro-basketball team. And she posts her music online.
DJ Annie Red also performs at schools. She likes to give students “a catchy, rhythmic, interactive show” while teaching them how to overcome bullying. She says she wants to help kids who are suffering “feel like they’re not alone.”
At school shows, DJ Annie Red mixes music. She has held dance contests. She has asked students to make an antibullying pledge . And she has read from The Bully Stop. It’s a book based on her song “No You Won’t Bully Me.”
DJ Annie Red says that standing up to bullying is more important than ever. That’s partly because people can bully others on social media while hiding behind a username. “You don’t have to show your face at all,” she says.
But she sees a brighter future ahead. DJ Annie Red believes that kids can use their passions to inspire change, as she has. “That’s something I really enjoy seeing,” she says. “Kids being more confident in themselves and wanting to do something that they really enjoy doing is something that motivates me.”