The Adderley School for the Performing Arts expanded to Four Points in 2015 and is growing with local talent.
“In the fall of 2015, we started with 31 students in Four Points. In just three years, we have almost quadrupled our roster, teaching over 100 kids this semester,” said Janet Adderley, founder.
Adderley, a Broadway and TV veteran, created the school in 1993 in California to help her shy daughter to speak up and let her voice be heard.
“If I were a color, I’d be fire engine red,” said Adderley. “If my daughter were a color, she’d be lavender. I created the Adderley School to help my lavender girl find her red voice.”
Her first school was in Pacific Palisades and then she expanded to Santa Barbara.The choice to open in Four Points was purely coincidental.
A need to find a choir to perform at a 2015 PBS concert at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood led to a citywide open call to find four Austin youth singers. She expected to find these talents from communities that support the arts well such as Westlake, Barton Creek or Tarrytown but was surprised when one of the children selected was a Four Points student, Anna Zalveson. Her family hosted an open house demonstration at River Place Country Club and Adderley stated, “and the rest was history!”
Students from the Four Points studio have already made their impact.
On Feb. 25, Adderley choir students from both California and Texas rallied around Montecito mudslide survivor Lauren Cantin at the Kick Ash Bash. The fundraiser supported first responders and their efforts that saved several lives including Cantin’s. Over $2 million dollars was raised.
Local student Bridgette Peterson, from Four Points, was at the fundraiser, and Adderley students met Ellen Degeneres and Katy Perry, who invited them to come back on May 19 to perform on stage with her at the Santa Barbara Bowl. Peterson again flew out for the concert and was joined by fellow Four Points’ classmate Kate Denning. Their choir receiving a standing ovation at the concert.
In April, a roster of 23 Four Points students performed in “Les Miserables”.
Adderley attributes some of the success of the Four Points school to the River Place Student Theater, a decade old institution.
“As a girl growing up in Houston, from modest beginnings, I was also one of the ‘fortunate ones’. I was blessed with brilliant, dedicated parents who supported me and taught me by example to dream big dreams,” Adderley said. “They made great sacrifices to expose me to everything – theater, ballet, music and art.”
She is determined to be a role model for less fortunate children and started her dream of becoming a non-profit this year. This fall the Adderley School started partnering with two Title 1 schools, Blackshear Elementary and the Ann Richards School, to bring Adderley workshops to their campuses.
“Musical theater changed my life,” she said, and she wants to give back. For more information, visit theadderleyschool.org.