Sasha Inagamov is a Renaissance man in the making.
The Forest Hills fifth-grader, a student at PS 175, is an artist, actor and voracious reader who’s thinking of becoming a scientist or doctor one day.
And he’s just been named a grand prize winner of WNET Channel 13’s 50th anniversary poster contest, beating out every other elementary school entrant in the tri-state area. Sasha’s skillful drawing features characters from five WNET cartoons.
“My father is a professional artist, and since I was really little I’ve always loved to draw, and I just have the talent,” said Sasha, 10. The contest was the first he had ever entered, and when his mother told him about the grand prize, “I was extremely excited and I couldn’t believe that I won.”
As the winner, Sasha’s getting a slew of prizes from WNET, the Public Broadcasting Service’s flagship station, including one-year free memberships to Kids Club Thirteen, the Museum of the City of New York and the South Street Seaport Museum; a birthday party for up to 100 guests at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre; and books and toys from Channel 13 children’s shows.
Sasha’s parents, Marsha and Shavkat, credit those shows with helping make their son the intelligent young man he is.
“We are very grateful to PBS/Channel 13 for providing superior quality children’s programming, which is both educational and entertaining,” Marsha said. “These TV shows teach children math, science, English language arts, social studies, history and other subjects in a very fun and engaging way. Sasha grew up watching PBS, and we attribute his success in school in large part to this station.”
Sasha’s poster features, in the front, Jackie, Matt and Inez from “Cyberchase”; and Brain, Arthur and Buster from “Arthur”; and in the rear, the Man in the Yellow Hat and Curious George from “Curious George”; Martin and Chris Kratt from “The Wild Kratts”; Digit from “Cyberchase”; and Martha and Helen from “Martha Speaks.” Copies of it will go to new Kids Club Thirteen members.
When he’s not drawing, or acing his subjects at school, Sasha enjoys hobbies such as reading — the Harry Potter series is his favorite — tennis and acting. Last year he played Friar Lawrence in his school’s production of “Romeo and Juliet,” and the year before that he took on several roles in a play called “Time Saviors: The World’s Mixed Up Quest,” performed at Queens Theatre in the Park.
— Peter C. Mastrosimone