CARIBIA SITE REVIEW: Ottley Music School/Classics of Ebony Enterprises, Trinidad and West Africa via Washington, D.C.

(Originally published at

With the motto, “Excellence and Patience in Music Making”, Nevilla E. Ottley-Adjahoe lives out the credo in both her professional and personal lives. Her two websites, and Classics of Ebony highlight achievement and encourage music education.

Ottley-Adjahoe was born in Trinidad, West Indies and was raised in La Sierra, California. She later continued her education at Caribbean Union College Secondary School, Maracas, Trinidad, and graduated from Caribbean Union College Jr. College with an A.A. in Music and Spanish in 1966. She graduated from Andrews University, Berrien Springs, Michigan with a Bachelor’s in Music Education in 1971 and her Master of Arts degree in Organ Performance & Music History in 1972. She later graduated from the Catholic University of America, Washington, D. C. with a Masters in Music Conducting in 1980.

While the Curriculum Vitae is impressive, even more worthy of mention is that Nevilla Ottley-Adjahoe managed to immerse herself in her education while creating a legacy for music students of the Washington, D.C. area. Her Ottley Music School boasts a diverse staff imparting a wide variety of music disciplines. The school’s website begins with a splash: smiles, skills and training are embodied in collage of people while words like ‘Challenge’ and ‘Joy’ share their space. Clicking through brings the main page, which displays a welcome message, the School Motto and Mission.

An ever-present menu at the top frame keeps handy information at your fingertips. The Information link offers a brief history of the Ottley Music School, as well as contact information. An impressive roster of private music instructors follows. The Board of Directors and Advisors are listed here as well. Under the Programs link, you will find a comprehensive rundown of teaching methods and other pertinent details. Those interested in enrolling may visit Admissions, where an application is a download away. Applications available in both MicroSoft Word and PDF (Portable Document Format) files. Either a Word Viewer or a PDF reader (Adobe Acrobat) will be required here. The Calendar link boasts the yearly schedule of courses and activities.

Most intriguing of the top frame’s links is the one called Historical Instruments. Included among the (extremely) grand and other pianos is an Erard, a Grotrian Steinweg, a Steinway, and a Stieff Upright. A bit of historical data accompanies each keyboard listed; inclusion of this information puts the flourish on a love letter that is a tribute to a life filled with music.

The Classics of Ebony Enterprises site features the lives and work of husband Edgar E. Adjahoe and Nevilla herself. Mr. Adjahoe was born in Ghana, West Africa and spent most of his life in the United States. He graduated from Dakota Wesleyan University of South Dakota, with his Bachelor’s in Biology with a Music minor. He put his scientific skills to work on behalf of the U.S. Army for 3 years between a brief tour in Vietnam and the famed Walter Reed Medical Center, Washington, D.C. and 2 years at the National Institutes of Health. While continuing with his endeavors in the Health and Science fields, Adjahoe became Co-owner and CEO of Classics of Ebony Enterprises.

Classics of Ebony Music is featured weekly on the Washington, D.C. radio station WSTS FM 91.9, and its website contains music for download via RealAudio. There’s more on the menu, including links to current and upcoming events, reviews, a gallery and guestbook. You may even view a catalogue of books written by Nevilla Ottley-Adjahoe; an online store is currently under construction. It was Nevilla who submitted the sites for consideration for review, and to be perfectly honest, there is more than enough on each of the sites, both separately and together, to fascinate the lover of fine music.