Cleophas Adderley Jr at the Icon Awards.
By Danielle Barnes
CULTURAL icon Cleophas Adderley Jr, 62, died Wednesday after a long illness.
Mr Adderley, an accomplished composer, was the founder and director the Bahamas National Youth Choir (BNYC).
He was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Bahamian Icon Awards on June 17 for his contributions to nation building through youth development.
In a statement issued yesterday, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Michael Pintard expressed his condolences to Mr Adderley’s family. He noted that it was a pleasure to have worked with Mr Adderley while employed as a consultant at the ministry years ago.
Mr Pintard described Mr Adderley as a “distinguished” and “charismatic” scholar.
“He was a unique and iconic cultural character who dedicated his life to music and to the people of the Bahamas.
“His life experience led him to be involved in many facets of the community where he touched the lives of thousands through music,” Mr Pintard noted.
Mr Adderley was acclaimed for his work with the BNYC, which he started in 1983. He trained hundreds of young people in the art of singing and performing and dedicated his life to music.
The BNYC won numerous competitions and participated in many international festivals and iconic events. The choir performed in the presence of some noteworthy figures including actor Sir Sidney Poitier, Queen Elizabeth II, and the late Dr Nelson Mandela.
He wrote the first Bahamian grand opera “Our Boys,” which was the first opera to have been written and performed in the English-speaking Caribbean.
Mr Adderley is the last son and eighth of nine children born to the late Cleophas E Adderley, former member of Parliament, and Helen Bailey Adderley, a seamstress, pianist and organist and daughter of the late R M Bailey.
He also served as the director of the senior choir at Holy Trinity Church, where he served for many years.
He is survived by his wife, Françoise Brooks Adderley, and two children.