On Sunday, July 15th The Help Group once again hosted Music For Autism for “A Disney Afternoon” concert at the Autism Center Theater at our Sherman Oaks campus. This free, interactive concert series is a wonderful opportunity for families to enjoy music in a sensory-friendly environment.

The Help Group was pleased to welcome back to the stage the dynamic and talented performers Brad Ellis, Dianne Fraser, Eydie Alyson, and to welcome a new performer, Ashley Fox Linton.

Children, young adults, and parents came ready to dance and sing along to beloved Disney classics. The entire afternoon was filled with memorable moments and spirited audience participation.

For example, one young concert attendee with a remarkable voice requested to hear one of his favorite songs, “Can You Feel The Love Tonight,” from The Lion King. He joined the performers on stage and sang the song beautifully, as Brad Ellis accompanied him on the piano and sang as well. Another regular Music For Autism participant brought her mandolin to play during the concert. This exceptionally gifted young performer was thrilled when she learned that Brad Ellis, who was featured prominently on the hit show Glee, would be headlining the Music For Autism concert. The two played music together, and Brad even autographed her mandolin at the end of the concert.

During the event, one concert participant remarked, “I started going to Music For Autism concerts at The Help Group years ago, and they have inspired my love and appreciation for the gift of music.”

Jacqueline Schultz, Help Group Theater Director, was a wonderful surprise addition to the afternoon. She led the ‘Conducting Time’ portion of the concert with tremendous enthusiasm, and had concert- goers on their feet, waving their hands in the air to the music. It was such a joyful sight.

“The Music For Autism ‘A Disney Afternoon’ concert was both magical and uplifting, and captured the spirit of live performance and audience participation. Children and families were moved to dance, sing, and clap along to some of their favorite Disney songs. The transformative power of music was on full display throughout the concert. It was truly an afternoon to remember,” said Dr. Barbara Firestone, President & CEO, The Help Group.

What an incredible day for the families in our community! Our thanks to everyone involved, including Brad, Eydie, Dianne, and Ashley for lending their talents, and to all the amazing Help Group volunteers who supported this event.

  1. (L-R) Dianne Fraser, Dr. Barbara Firestone, President & CEO, The Help Group, Brad Ellis, Brad Shahine, Director of Public Affairs, The Help Group, Ashley Fox Linton, Jacqueline Schultz, Theater Director, The Help Group, and Eydie Alyson
  2. Dr. Barbara Firestone and Concert Participants
  3. (L-R) Ashley Fox Linton, Eydie Alyson, Dianne Fraser
  4. Brad Ellis and a Concert Participant
  5. Brad Ellis
  6. Family Enjoys ‘A Disney Afternoon’ Together
  7. Concert Participant Dancing
  8. Family Participates In ‘Conducting Time’
  9. (L-R) Concert Participant Singing, Dr. Barbara Firestone, Brad Ellis, Dianne Fraser, Eydie Alyson, Ashley Fox Linton
  10. Family Participates In ‘Conducting Time’