Kenoly Kadia (Photo by Danny Fulgencio)

Kenoly Kadia (Photo by Danny Fulgencio)

Our neighborhood’s young piano virtuoso will make it through college without crippling debt.

Kenoly Kadia, who was featured in the May Advocate, received the first Rogene Russell scholarship from the Fine Arts Chamber Players.

Kadia graduated from Carter High School and will attend the University of Texas at Austin in the fall.

As a child growing up in Camaroon, he almost died of malnutrition. But Kadia’s parents fled the country when he was 6, moving to Italy, where he first learned to play piano.

In Dallas, Kadia began taking free private lessons from instructor John Tatum through the Fine Arts Chamber Players. He’s won numerous high-profile piano competitions, and he had scholarship offers from the University of Memphis as well as from UT.

Quinn Mason, who graduated from North Dallas High School and now attends the Dallas County Community College District, also received the scholarship, which is in its first year.

Don and Norma Stone established the scholarship in honor of Russell, who co-founded the Fine Arts Chamber Players, last year. They seeded the fund with $500,000, and it since has grown to $691,000 with additional donations.