Blaze Benavides

Parents: Lesvia Benavides and Adolfo “Popo” Benavides

Education/Future Plans:

I plan to study performance percussion at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. My ideal future is assuming the position of principal percussionist for a major symphony orchestra. Maybe someday, teaching percussion at the college level.

Clubs/Officer Positions:

2 Year Drumline Section Leader, National Honor Society, Vice President of SkillsUSA


It’s very difficult to attribute one word of advice as being most important, especially as a student who’s had many lectures in just 4 years. However, my Dad has probably given me some of the best advice for dealing with day-to-day struggles. “There’s not enough time in a day to be worried about the negative side of things” is my dads answer to leading a happy life. In the stressful and fast paced life of a student, this advice was and still is paramount to keep smiling and rolling with the punches.

5 years:

“Where do I see myself in 5 years?” Wherever God Wants Me! After studying at JMU, a career in music can take you anywhere in the world. Really it comes down to what positions are available and where. In 5 years I see myself dedicated to my music and hopefully building off of the solid foundations I’ve built for myself.

If you could change anything about this world, what would it be and why?

Such a grand question, but if I had a choice, it would be for everyone to be more positive. I know that this is impossible, being that people go through a great deal of issues in life, and sometimes it’s default to get upset. However, interactions with each other would be so much more cohesive if there was more positivity. I’m clearly no pessimist, and this quasi-utopian ideal is rather far-fetched, but you can’t disagree with the idea of people taking a positive outlook bettering the world.

Invite 3 people to dinner

A dinner with whoever I want instantly points me to either my love of music or movies. I assume I’d have to do some of both: I would most definitely start by inviting someone who’s piece I recently played, David Maslanka, although he is passed away, to have the opportunity to discuss his music would be interesting. Next would probably be one of the greatest score composers of his time Hanz Zimmer, for his major works in some monumental movies. Lastly, my love of listening to music and percussion leads me to, the drummer for The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Chad Smith, for his equally intricate and groovy drum parts.


Food: Pasta

Book: A Time to Kill, John Grisham

Movie: Forrest Gump

Town in Texas: Corpus Christi, Texas

Vacation Spot: Mustang Hollow Campground, Mathis, Texas

Teen of the Week is sponsored by Alice Chevrolet. Students featured in the Teen of the Week are eligible for a scholarship for $1,500 at the end of the school year.