The National Advocate for People with Down Syndrome Since 1979

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A Smile as Big as the Moon
John Corbett and Peter ten Brink
John Corbett and Peter ten Brink
A Smile as Big as the Moon

Peter ten Brink, a nineteen year old teen with Down syndrome played one of the main roles in the Hallmark Hall of Fame movie, "A Smile as Big as the Moon." The movie is based on a true story and aired on ABC on January 29, 2012. Peter plays the role of Ben Schmidt, a high school student with Down syndrome who dreams of becoming an astronaut. Peter has been acting since he was eight years old in a local theatre company called Special Gifts theatre. He has played many different roles such as Winthrop in the "Music Man" and the Prince in "Cinderella." Last year he played the lead role in a short film called "By Any Other Name," Directed by Dave Midell of Play On Productions. This short film was recently featured at the Sprout film Festival in New York. Peter heard about the auditions for "A Smile as Big as the Moon" through the Down Syndrome Association of Los Angeles, which keeps a file of actors with Down syndrome. Peter and his acting coach, Sarah Graber submitted the audition tape right before Labor Day of 2010. It was soon after Labor Day that Peter was asked to audition in person in Wilmington, North Carolina. Peter found out he got the part the evening of his audition for the role and was told he needed to be back in Wilmington the next week for five weeks of filming. Needless to say, the ten hour working days and the demands of being on and off the set all day were a new challenge for Peter. Peter did rise to the challenge but not without a few "bumps in the road" along the way. All in all, Peter would do it again because he says "acting is my passion and my dream." Peter has taught all of us that with determination, focus, passion, talent and yes, a little luck, anything can happen and you can realize your dreams.




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Deborah Riner, Mexico,
8/13/2013 8:47:37 PM
How wonderful and how inspiring! What a testimony to dreams, determination, and parents who believe in their children.

Brandy Castlebury, United States, MO
1/30/2012 11:14:47 AM
I watched this movie last night it was beautiful and inspiring my daughter is 15 and has downs its alaways a wonderful feeling to see a child such as her do something so large and inspiring as Peter did in this movie :)

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