PAA Performing Arts Academy

Bringing arts education back to the community







At PAA, we are transforming our community and our world through a generation of students who are confident in their self-worth, understand the importance of serving their community, and recognize the value in our individual differences.

Our childrens theater classes use curriculums that follow or align with state standards for music and arts education. However the real magic isn’t in what we teach, but how we teach it.

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.


building character

our students learn more than performing arts.

Through the Performing Arts Academy, your child has access to curriculum based arts education that:

  • FOSTERS INDEPENDENCE through age-appropriate responsibilities
  • EMPHASIZES TEAMWORK and the importance of each individual’s contribution
  • ENCOURAGES KIDS TO FAIL FORWARD, and work through challenges in a supportive environment

what we do

Performing Arts Education

Childrens theater and performing arts classes for kids grades preK-12 that focus on acting, dance, music, voice, set design, theater makeup, directing and more!

Performing Arts Academy is a Non-Profit Theater Arts company based in South Denver/Highlands Ranch focused on creating community, building character, and inspiring excellence through performing arts education by bringing the transformative power of theatre to all people.

2020 – Best Drama/Theater Lessons
2020 – Best Dance Lessons
2019 – Best Drama/Theater Lessons
2019 – Best Dance Lessons
2017 – Best Drama/Theater Lessons
2016 – Best Summer Camp
2015 – Best Children’s Theater
2013 – Best Summer Camp
2013 – Best Children’s theater

2018 – Best theatre Group – Finalist
2017 – Best theatre Group – Finalist
2016 – Best theatre Group – Winner
2014 – Best theatre Group – Winner
2013 – Best theatre Group – Runner-Up

From Our Executive Director

Welcome to PAA!

I hope you will explore our website and learn more about he incredible program we have to offer. If you take one thing away from this site, I hope it’s the understanding that,

Our program is not about making stars.

That’s not to say we don’t have some incredibly talented students. We do! But instead of focusing on the extraordinary talent in our midst, we choose to place the emphasis on each individual’s contribution, and how critical each part is for the theatrical experience to succeed. This includes those backstage, onstage, and in director, choreographer, management, design, and technical positions. The applause at the end is for every person who participated, including those who are not visible to the audience.

Experiencing the power of collective achievement provides a foundation on which our students build an awareness of their place in our world, and deepen their understanding that together, we become more than we are individually.

Dr. James Ramsey
Executive Director

our sponsors


We are grateful to have the support of these sponsors. They give back to their community in a big way, and understand the value that performing arts, and arts education brings to students of all ages.

We believe that all students should have access to childrens theater classes and these companies and foundations make that possible.









Bauer Studios Logo


Bowen Family Performing Arts Fund/The Denver Foundation

Virginia W. Hill Trust Foundation

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John Boggs

John Boggs is a pianist, composer and vocalist based currently in Thornton, Colorado. He holds a DMA in Composition from the University of Colorado Boulder, a M.M. in Composition from the University of Michigan and a B.F.A. from Bard College. Previous piano instructors include German Diez and MaryAnn Griebling. He taught students of all ages and experience during his undergraduate and graduate studies.

At Bard College he studied voice with tenor Rufus Müller. He has sung such roles as Jamie in The Last Five Years, The Lecturer in Reefer Madness, and El Gallo in The Fantasticks. He teaches repertoire in the genres of musical theater, art song, pop and opera. He currently is a Choral Pro for both the Ars Nova singers and the St. John’s Episcopal Compline Choir. In 2016, John co-founded Renaissance and Contemporary a cappella group, Solis, to promote new works from local and national composers.

His music direction includes Pippin and Rocky Horror Picture Show with the Bard Musical Theater Company. In 2017 he music directed Centerstage Theater Company’s production of Godspell, and most recently their 2021 production of Theory of Relativity.

He has had composition premiers by such groups as the American Symphony Orchestra, University of Michigan’s Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Choir, DaCapo Chamber Players, Ars Nova Singers, the Columbine Chorale, 303 Children’s Choir (now Vocal Coalition), the Chamber Music Society of Ohio, and new music ensemble Contemporaneous. He is the co-founder/co-writer as well as the keyboardist and vocalist for experimental rock band Fifth Veil, and is delving into the world of film and interactive game scoring.

He also has experience teaching students with developmental disabilities. He provided accompaniment for Tapestry Theater’s productions of Elf, School House Rocks and Shrek Jr. He was previously employed with Imagine’s CORE day program, where he instructed group music classes using midi over wifi to create the feeling of being in a band and orchestra.



Katie Reid Milazzo

Katie is thrilled to be returning to her beautiful home state of Colorado after 15 years away performing and teaching professionally, and she is very excited to be joining PAA! National Tours: South Pacific (Nellie Forbush), 'S Wonderful (Jane), Annie (Ronnie Boylan). Regional: Last Five Years (Cathy), Marvelous Wonderettes (Missy), Princess and the Pea (Queen u/s), Land of Forgotten Toys (Queen), Full Monty (Pam), Ordinary Days (Claire), B’way: The Big Band Years (featured singer), Sweeney Todd, The Who's Tommy. BFA Musical Theater from The University of Oklahoma. In Chicago, Katie taught and directed at several performing arts programs, directing/music directing over 20 shows with ages K - 12. She especially loves working one on one with students and believes in the transformative power of theater for everyone!


McKensey Struzik

McKensey graduated from Point Park University’s Conservatory of Performing Arts with a BA in Acting and a Minor in Musical Theatre in 2016.  Since, she has taught children’s theatre at various studios in Virginia as well as in Colorado.  She has taught dance, private voice and group acting classes as well as choreographed, music directed many productions.  She has tap danced for 17 years and had the opportunity to study under tap dancers such as Savion Glover, Chloe Arnold, Maude Arnold, and Jason Janas.  She is thrilled to teach tap with PAA this year and can’t wait to get started.

Melanie Ware

Melanie has been with PAA as their Properties Master for six years and teaching classes for five. Melanie received her BA in Theatre from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs in May of 2016. Between Acting, Directing and Properties Design she has roughly 12 years of theatrical experience. Favorite PAA design credits include: You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown!, Tarzan, Mary Poppins and The Addams Family.