Return of PAPAS

Will it play in Peoria? Peoria Area Performing Arts School is a local theater center that holds classes for students from the time they are toddlers to when they graduate high school. From tap classes to summer musicals to even competitive show choir, PAPAS has always shined brightly and shown people from both inside and outside of Illinois what Peoria has to offer. At the end of August, however, an email was sent to the students, stating that the program was closing due to several reasons, and many were unsure if it would start up again. Carlton Bell, a rising eighth-grade member of PAPAS remarked about the studio’s closing, “When I heard that PAPAS was closing, I felt dumbstruck. My schedule was suddenly so empty.” Many other students, primarily from PAPAS’s three show choir teams— Vocal Velocity, Soundwave, and Mixed Harmony— as well as PAPAS’s supporters, shared this sentiment and hoped the program would only be closed temporarily.

A little less than a month later, those fans’ wishes were met, and after receiving much-needed support, PAPAS sent out another, significantly happier email: PAPAS was back! Many students of the program were filled with joy knowing their favorite extracurricular activity was back. They flocked back to the meetings and practices they had missed so dearly, trying to make up for the lost time and plan for a successful new year with their various programs. “I’m glad PAPAS is back,” Carlton added. “Last year’s Vocal Velocity season was amazing, and I am seriously looking forward to all the practices and competitions that we will start preparing for, and I am so excited to join Soundwave when I start high school!” Carlton is one of many members and fans of PAPAS that was devastated by its sudden end and now refuses to take it for granted. PAPAS will not let their unexpected weeks off stop them from showing all Central Illinois and other states that it will, in fact, play in Peoria.

If interested in any future PAPAS Productions, feel free to visit their website at