Who We Are

Our Mission

To provide transformative character building experiences in K-12 students through performing arts education.

Our Vision

The Performing Arts Academy (PAA) will be widely recognized as providing the best performing arts experiences in the greater Denver metropolitan area.

Captain Hook

Character

Through Integrity and Leadership

  1. Building confidence and nurturing self-esteem through transformative experiences for our students.
  2. Inspiring an understanding of diversity that includes people of all abilities, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and faiths.
  3. Cultivating leadership in our students by modeling a spirit of kindness, generosity, collaboration and teamwork.

Our

Core

Values

Voice Class

Curriculum

Through a balanced approach

1. Creating an exceptional performing arts experience by setting a bar of personal excellence for both our students and staff.
2. Providing experienced and professional faculty who foster respect and acceptance while challenging individual growth.
3. Utilizing Colorado state curriculum standards to guide education and performance for each age group.

Character

Through Integrity and Leadership

  1. Building confidence and nurturing self-esteem through transformative experiences for our students.
  2. Inspiring an understanding of diversity that includes people of all abilities, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and faiths.
  3. Cultivating leadership in our students by modeling a spirit of kindness, generosity, collaboration and teamwork.

Community

Through engagement:

1. Cultivating a community within a community by embracing diversity through shared experiences in the arts.
2. Giving back to the greater community through fundraising performances for scholarships and local causes.
3. Partnering with local businesses and other organizations through sponsorships and collaboartions to create a “small village” for the performing arts that serves the surrounding public as well as our students, staff and families.

Dance Class

Our

Core

Values

Curriculum

Through a balanced approach

1. Creating an exceptional performing arts experience by setting a bar of personal excellence for both our students and staff.
2. Providing experienced and professional faculty who foster respect and acceptance while challenging individual growth.
3. Utilizing Colorado state curriculum standards to guide education and performance for each age group.

Voice Class

Community

Through engagement:

1. Cultivating a community within a community by embracing diversity through shared experiences in the arts.
2. Giving back to the greater community through fundraising performances for scholarships and local causes.
3. Partnering with local businesses and other organizations through sponsorships and collaborations to create a “small village” for the performing arts that serves the surrounding public as well as our students, staff and families.

Dance Class

Our Programs

All programs are held in different locations throughout the year: St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, Mountain Vista High School, Littleton High School and East Elementary School.
Spring Programs

Spring Musical Theatre Show
Rehearse twice a week for 10-weeks for a full ensemble production. PAA classes are required for participation.

Spring Classes
10-14 different classes offered and divided by skill level or by grade level in Dance, Acting or Improvisation, and Voice.

Spring Outreach Program
PAA provides 40-50 scholarships through donations, sponsorships and grants for at-risk youth to attend rehearsals and classes after school for amusical theatre production at East Elementary,a title 1 school with over 80% of students in the free and reduced lunch program.

Summer Programs

Summer Musical Theater Intensives:
2-week programs that involve curriculum-driven classes and performance-based rehearsals.

Kidz Theatre for K – 2nd grade
Children’s Theatre for 2nd – 6th grade
Youth Theatre for 7th – 12th grade
Ensemble Theatre for 2nd – 12th grade
Summer Camp for 3 yrs – Kindergarten

Fall Programs

Fall Musical Theatre Show
Rehearse twice a week for 10-weeks producing a full ensemble production. PAA classes are required for participation.

Fall Classes
10-14 different classes offered and divided by skill level or by grade level in Dance, Acting or Improvisation, and Voice.

Fall Outreach Program
PAA provides 40-50 scholarships through donations, sponsorships and grants for at-risk youth to attend rehearsals and classes after school for amusical theatre production at East Elementary,a title 1 school with over 80% of students in the free and reduced lunch program.

Our Story and Our Future

The Performing Arts Academy (PAA) is based out of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, located at 8817 South Broadway, in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. In 2006, James Ramsey and Roberta Hamilton Griggs created a theater arts program that would engage 26 children and their families, inspiring them to reveal brilliance and to grow within their community. In the south metro Denver area, PAA is unique, attracting students of all backgrounds and employing quality, seasoned professionals with degrees in music theater, music performance and music education. The teaching staff consistently designs and implements curriculum that delivers a high quality experience in performing arts for children of all abilities. Our educational model focuses on teaching confidence, cooperation, collaboration, creativity, and community through performing arts experiences.

PAA has grown from 26 students in 2006 to over 700 students in 2016. Continued growth patterns indicate over 1,000 students in multiple programs by 2018. Facility needs for staff and faculty have been accommodated by the continued generosity of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, but our rapid growth will soon demand additional space. Staffing and program needs will expand proportionately, demanding skillful management to maintain steady and successful growth over time. Long term strategic planning options include but are not limited to:

  1. Building successful programs in music and theatre for children.
  2. Expanding into local schools to enhance music and theatre education.
  3. Developing community partnerships to support and sustain growth.
  4. Creating a safe space where students are inspired, nurtured and challenged to learn, perform and grow.

PAA continues its efforts to become a self-sustaining organization, with partnerships, fund-raising and grant writing supplementing the current model of “fee for services.”

A Note From the Executive Director
If its your first time or your hundredth time visiting our website, we welcome you and encourage you to search the many different aspects and opportunities at PAA. Since our first day in the summer of 2006, we’ve continually created, modified, and refined our programs to fit the needs of the surrounding community. Each of these programs fosters individual growth and skill building and is tailored to fit the age group represented. At PAA, we place a high value on the student experience and with that comes the responsibility to engage the student in dialogue around our core values: Curriculum, Character and Community. In order to sustain a consistent method of instruction, our Teaching Artists create curriculums that follow or align with state standards for music and arts education. We also stress the importance of building an individual’s character through transformative experiences that can often lead to greater self esteem, leadership ability, service and acceptance of diversity. In addition, the value of being in community is simply allowing the student to recognize the connectedness we all share and how they function differently because of that awareness. PAA has encountered a 40% or more growth rate since its inception. Sustaining this amount of growth over the years not only takes a talented staff but a dedicated one. As you explore the website, I encourage you to read more about our incredible PAA staff. They truly are amazing! Our vision for this program is to serve the needs of students in this community and create experiences that builds kids. PAA not only advances the cause of Performing Arts in the south Metro Denver area but moreover nurtures individual growth. – Dr. James Ramsey, Executive Director
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