Arts Department 

The Brenden Mann Foundation awarded the Adelson School’s Performing Arts Department a sizeable grant this week, enabling significant enhancements to the theatre’s sound and lighting systems, projection, and tech board.


“I could not be more excited for this talented group of theatre arts educators and their creative vision for our theatre program,” said Adelson School Director of Development Lynn Wexler. “We received confirmation of the award just two days following a visit to our campus, from the Foundation’s Executive Director, to assess our theatre facility and program. She was very impressed with Upper School Music Chair David Philippus’ and Upper School Theatre Instructor Larry Dachslager’s presentation.”


 “Receiving this grant is an exhilarating leap toward our ambitious dream of turning the limitations of our existing auditorium into a wonderfully functional and versatile theatre environment where our arts program can flourish,” said Dachslager. “And the timing is perfect. We’re currently developing ACT (Adelson Community Theatre), a performing arts program designed to mount live productions that the school and community at large can participate and take pride in.”


Producing a polished production from all creative aspects is a responsibility he and the arts team take seriously. “This profoundly generous gift ensures that our students have access to a venue worthy of their talents and passion to create performance art,” said Dachslager.


 Philippus agreed and added that, “Not only does this elevate and expand opportunities for learning in the theatre world, but performances will also benefit from proper amplification and lighting as will audience enjoyment.”


 Lower School Dance and Theater Director, Lisa Berg, can’t wait to see results achieved from the grant. “I foresee the enhancements opening the door to more opportunities for our students to be actively involved in set design and stage tech lighting and sound design. Our students will have access to higher quality audio visual equipment which in turn will create a more elaborate theatrical feel. The Adelson School theater productions and programming will be unparalleled.”


“I’m grateful to the Arts and Development departments for their team efforts to secure this grant,” said Lower School Art Teacher Debbie Levy. “I look forward to the world of creative possibilities that lie ahead.”


Library Specialist Jen Nails is thrilled for Philippus and Dachslager, as well as the many students who thrive as part of the Adelson School performing arts community. As a poet and Adelson School resident author, she looks forward to curating and producing more dynamic and professional theatrical events, “like our annual High School Poetry Slam, as well as welcoming guest authors and speakers to campus for special programs that occur during Nevada Reading Week.”


Lower School music teacher Jenni Kearns perhaps summed it up best. “I’m just thrilled to look forward to reaping the benefits of an elevated arts program and the meaning it holds for the arts department and our students. We will now have a theater that is as amazing as our students!” 



Photo (left to right)

Rhy Robinson, US Art/ Theatre Tech/ Dean of students

Larry Dachslager, US Theater

Jen Nails, Library Specialist/ Resident Author/ Poet 

David Philippus, Department Chair/ US Music

Lisa Berg LS, Theatre and Dance

Debbie Levy, LS Art

Jenni Kearns, LS Music



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