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NBCDFW Something Good: Kirk Franklin Starts Camp for Aspiring Musicians in Arlington

(original broadcast aired on June 25, 2019)  Nearly 50 North Texas high school students became the inaugural class of gospel music legend Kirk Franklin’s Camp Lotus.

The week-long camp gave an immersive look into the music industry; giving the students an opportunity to learn performance, writing and recording from the best in the business.

"This experience has been magical," Kennedi Brown, 16, said. "That’s just a blessing for kids my age."

"This week has been amazing," Jake Boilla, 16, said. "I’ve never been around so many musicians and so many producers and all these different types of people."

Camp Lotus culminated with a grand finale concert Saturday at Levitt Pavilion in Downtown Arlington.

"You feel like a proud papa. You feel like you are leaving a piece of yourself to be able to continue in the next generation," Franklin said.

Franklin wanted to make sure the students not only walked away with an understanding of the music industry, but also a few life lessons.

"So that when the record deal ends or when the concerts no longer sell out, you still have an identity of knowing that you were made for something greater that what you left on that stage," Franklin said.

They didn’t have to go to Hollywood or Nashville. The talented youth were able to find their voices right in the heart of Downtown Arlington.

"I want to impact people with my music. I want them to feel my lyrics to know they’re not the only ones," Brown said.

View the original story by Larry Collins on