Molly will be a guest on ABC’s The View on May 26th, 2021. Be sure to tune in!
Sometimes a decision really moves you. This decision has certainly moved us in many ways. We’ve been approached a few times about this amazing young lady. Our 2021 Adopted Fighter is Molly Oldham. Meet Molly…
On August 15th, 2019, Molly Oldham was supposed to move to the University of North Carolina-Greensboro to join five other students in a highly selective musical theater program. Instead, tragically earlier that month, a tennis-ball sized tumor was found and she was diagnosed with Stage 3 anaplastic ependymoma, a rare brain cancer affecting 300 people a year nationwide. Molly underwent an 8-hour brain surgery at Akron Children’s Hospital, 33 rounds of proton radiation at University Hospitals in Cleveland and months of daily intense physical therapy. Through it all, the 2018 Revere High School graduate always kept a positive attitude. An hour after surgery, she woke up singing Ben Platt’s “Ease Your Mind” and has depended on music throughout her recovery.
Molly Oldham of Bath had been happily gearing up for the start of spring semester classes Tuesday at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Instead, the sophomore musical theater student spent the day an hour away, meeting with her neurosurgery team at Duke University Hospital to prepare for a second brain surgery that she’ll undergo Friday.
Molly, 19, began her battle with Stage 3 anaplastic ependymoma more than 17 months ago at Akron Children’s Hospital, where she had life-saving neurosurgery in August 2019 to remove a tennis ball-sized tumor.
Molly Oldham, currently a Sophomore Musical Theater Major at UNC Greensboro, North Carolina, hails from Akron, Ohio.
Molly was diagnosed with Stage 3 Anaplastic Ependymoma, which is a rare brain cancer, on the day she was supposed to move to college. Surgery, radiation and recovery put her a semester behind her classmates, but Molly pushed back, stating, “Cancer will never define who I am as a person or a performer. In fact, being diagnosed with cancer at 18, has sparked a fire inside me to use my voice for a purpose.”
“When I sing, act, dance or speak, I want you to feel something. I want to inspire you to take action somehow. I want to make a difference and motivate others to make a difference in their circle of influence as well.”
Molly’s sincere hope for the song she recorded with Cancer Can Rock is that it can serve as an anthem for others going through similar challenges.
Shortly after recording the song, after going home during winter break, Molly was tested and it was determined that there was a recurrence of cancer (two small tumors). She’s going into surgery at the end of Inauguration week. The last time she came out of surgery, Molly sang Ben Platt’s “Ease My Mind” an hour later. This time she fully intends to come out of the procedure singing her own song, her own creation, her own anthem. We hope we’ll be hearing and seeing Molly perform this song for many years, and that her wish for it to provide hope and inspiration for others comes true.
UNC Greensboro’s Molly Oldham (BFA Musical Theatre ’23) has been chosen by BYUtv as someone deserving of some extra TLC following her cancer diagnosis and treatment, and her subsequent return to UNCG. The “Random Acts” television show focuses on providing “random acts of kindness” to deserving individuals.
The show’s producers determined that the best way to give Molly a random act would be to allow her to bring joy to others. So they set up a virtual concert, led by Molly, to entertain cancer patients from around the world.
The episode features additional special guests, surprises, and interviews orchestrated to bring Molly joy. Other UNCG family members who appear on the show include musical theater faculty Dominick Amendum and Erin Farrell Speer, student Jordan Speas (BFA Acting ’21), and numerous members of the UNCG BFA in Musical Theatre cohort.
The episode premiered on Jan. 6, and can be viewed here.