In 1970, Fred and Winnie Allen, and their daughter, Allison, moved to the small southern town of Thomasville, Georgia from New York where they had all worked as professional entertainers and performers. With prestigious awards, a career on Broadway and growing acclaim and opportunities, Fred left his career behind in an effort to put the wellbeing of his family ahead of personal success. Once in Thomasville, Fred became a high school music teacher and with 20 charter members, he and Winnie formed a new group of singing teenaged entertainers they would call the Thomasville Music & Drama Troupe. Fred would use this group to begin sharing skills he had gained from training at the world-renowned Juilliard School, professional experience on the New York stage and a career as an artist and repertoire producer with RCA Records. Fred, who had earned his Master's Degree in Education from Auburn University, his Master's Degree in Sacred Music from Union Theological Seminary/Yale University Institute of Sacred Music, completed his doctoral work in Adolescent Psychology at New York's Columbia University and holds the Artist's Diploma from Juilliard, where he studied voice with Hans Heinz, the eminent authority on the tenor voice, had a wealth of knowledge and training to share with those around him.
Fred and Winnie cultivated a group of performing teenagers that embraced all facets of the community and through this organization put mentorship at the forefront of their efforts.
In founding the Thomasville Music & Drama Troupe, Fred Allen set out to create a vehicle through which he could share his talents and his experiences with young people, whom otherwise wouldn't have had the opportunity to learn first-hand about music and theatre and showcase their talents. Five decades later, thousands of students have been taught through the Thomasville Music and Drama Troupe and Fred and Winnie's selfless life. Their devotion to others has had far reaching positive impact and today Fred and Winnie Allen serve as a living testament to the power of music, the arts and mentorship to change lives for the better.