Family of Cave Creek boy with autism performs on Disney’s Fam Jam

Nov 22, 2020, 7:00 AM

(Courtesy photo)...

(Courtesy photo)

(Courtesy photo)

PHOENIX — An 8-year-old Cave Creek boy with autism and his family are set to take the small screen by storm Monday at 9 p.m. when they appear on Disney Channel’s dance contest show “Fam Jam” with a chance at $10,000.

Brendan Schroeder was diagnosed with autism at 13 months old, making him one of the youngest diagnosed with the disorder, according to the release.

He had to go through an intense therapy program for six years. During this time, Schroeder’s passion for dance grew when visiting a dance studio with his older sister a few times a week.

“Brendan wanted to dance with his sister every time she danced here,” Amber Wittmers, owner of Adaptive Force Performing Arts in Scottsdale, said in the release.

Wittmers said Schroeder joined his first dance class when he was 3-years-old, which immediately changed the young boy’s life.

“In a very short period of time, his family began to notice changes,” she said. “He went from being completely non-verbal to talking and engaging with others around him.

“Dance brought him so much joy and happiness.”

Wittmers says Schroeder now spends 14 hours a week dancing.

Joining Schroeder on the dance floor will be his 41-year-old mom Gina Schroeder, 60-year-old grandfather Ed Bonner and 13-year-old sister Haley Schroeder.

“We are excited to share how dance has helped Brendan overcome his autism obstacles,” said Wittmers.

Schroeder and his family traveled to Hollywood in January to star in the show, according to the release.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Mega Millions forms are stacked and waiting on players on Aug. 7, 2023, in Silver Spring, Maryland....

Mega Millions ticket sold at Phoenix grocery store wins $40,000 thanks to Megaplier

A Mega Millions ticket sold at a Phoenix grocery store for Tuesday night’s drawing hit for a $40,000 payout.

51 minutes ago

File photo of an Amtrak train. The Arizona Department of Transportation was awarded $500,000 from t...

Kevin Stone

Arizona gets federal funding for Phoenix-Tucson passenger rail planning

The first federal funds have been allocated for reestablishing passenger rail service between Phoenix and Tucson, U.S. Rep. Greg Stanton of Arizona announced.

2 hours ago


KTAR Video

Video: Arizona teacher shortage by the numbers

Jim Sharpe breaks down the Arizona teachers shortage by the numbers and what is needed to retain educators in Wednesday’s Sharper Point commentary.

3 hours ago

Progress on the Moores Gulch bridge north of Phoenix is a milestone in the Interstate 17 Improvemen...

David Veenstra

Traffic shift at bridge north of Phoenix marks milestone in I-17 Improvement Project

Part of a new bridge north of Phoenix recently opened, marking a milestone for the Interstate 17 Improvement Project.

3 hours ago


KTAR Video

Video: Sharper Point: What is needed to retain teachers in Arizona?

Research finds that 30 percent of teacher positions are unfilled across Arizona and 53 percent of those vacancies are filled by those who do not reach the state’s standard certification requirements. Jim Sharpe takes a closer look in Wednesday’s Sharper Point commentary. Video: Jeremy Schnell and Felisa Cárdenas/KTAR News

3 hours ago

Stock image of pool water. A 1½-year-old boy died Monday, Dec. 4, after climbing through a dog doo...

Child climbed through dog door before drowning in Gilbert pool, police say

A 1½-year-old boy died Monday after climbing through a dog door and drowning in a backyard pool in Gilbert, authorities said.

5 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Follow @KTAR923...

Valley residents should be mindful of plumbing ahead of holidays

With Halloween in the rear-view and more holidays coming up, Day & Night recommends that Valley residents prepare accordingly.

Follow @KTAR923...

The 2023 Diamondbacks are a good example to count on the underdog

The Arizona Diamondbacks made the World Series as a surprise. That they made the playoffs at all, got past the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Wild Card round, swept the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLDS and won two road games in Philadelphia to close out a full seven-game NLCS went against every expectation. Now, […]



Importance of AC maintenance after Arizona’s excruciating heat wave

An air conditioning unit in Phoenix is vital to living a comfortable life inside, away from triple-digit heat.

Family of Cave Creek boy with autism performs on Disney’s Fam Jam