Art & Culture

A Buddy for Everyone

As Inspire Performing Arts Academy prepares for their production of Elf Jr. in December, the lead cast members get into the most difficult part of their rehearsals: singing and dancing at the same time.

Elf Jr., the magical Holiday story of one not so normal Elf looking for his long lost father in the city of New York, is soon to appear on stage in Hollister. As the cast at Inspire Performing Arts Academy prepares for their debut of the play on Dec. 15 at San Benito High School, the lead cast members begin the grueling trial every actor must face: beginning to sing and dance at the same time.

This particular production is heavy on song for the lead in particular. Buddy, the human boy adopted by Santa and raised as an Elf at the center of the, is being played by Jesus Jaramillo. Jesus, a bright-eyed and joyous looking man, was an obvious choice for the role of Buddy. During audition the gleam in his eye and his bright smile made him a standout for one of the only roles in the play to be filled by an adult.

A gleaming smile and glint in the eye aren't enough to get through this particular role, and Jesus will spend the next month working hard perfecting his voice and his movements with his cast members. The musical has a normal running time of up to 90 minutes, and the Buddy character is present for most of those scenes. Jesus does have other qualities that will help in this endeavor, an abundance of confidence in his abilities and a willingness to listen to his voice coach. The Director of the play and Principle of the Academy, Sally Hail is providing the voice coaching personally with assistance from vocal director Rachel Clayson while Maddi Alipaz instructs on choreography.

Buddy and his friends will be delighted to entertain you soon. Inspire Performing Arts Academy is a for-profit business that currently offers preschool dance, ballet/ pre pointe, tap, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, musical theater, theater, and adult classes. They offer music lessons in: piano, voice, and choir in addition to summer camps and parties. All are cast that audition for our theatrical shows. 



Inspire Performing Arts Academy offers a variety of children's and adult's fitness, dance, music, and performing arts classes. Our classes are curriculum based with report cards for students and excellent feedback and recommendations to parents for the advancement of our students. The Academy is located at 618 San Benito St. in downtown Hollister above the Mars Hill Cafe. Please call or swing by for information, or visit our website at