By Carole Meekins. CREATED Aug 21, 2014
MILWAUKEE - More than 4,500 Milwaukee students have been exposed to the arts thanks to an inspiring woman who overcame big odds.
Linda wade founded "Above the Clouds." It's a program that allows kids to take classes free of charge. Wade explains, "It gives them the confidence they probably would not get anywhere else, because you have to work together in the arts, dancing, acting, theater.
Classes are for kids from 5 to 17. All abilities are welcome. Wade says, "We have some children that have learning disabilities that their parents will bring to us. They say they were turned down at all the other agencies. We'll take them because I know what it's like to be able to want to dance or sing or act but can't."
Wade managed to study dance despite a lifetime of cardiac health issues. She shares, "I have a leaky valve, I have tachycardia, I have several other heart issues. Actually I have a machine inside right now." She admits, "Going from not being able to walk up a flight of stairs because I was so sick, to study ballet would bring tears to my moms eyes when she would watch me dance."
Surprisingly, Wade did not even begin to study dance till she was an adult.
"I was thirty. I was a heart patient most of my life. I wasn't able to walk and move and then God touched my heart."
Wade is even a member of a dance troupe that performs in women's prisons. Her journey is a graceful reminder to all of us, it's never too late to nurture new talent. Wade exclaims," That's why I tell the children no matter how old you are, it's never too late. If you really want to study the arts, you can!"