Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Growth of the P.A.S.S. Program

Arts education has always been the cornerstone of the Arts Council’s mission. 

In 1970, a series of Youth Concerts for elementary school students was scheduled through a partnership with Millikin University and newly-constructed Kirkland Fine Arts Center,
  • October 29, 1970 - Millikin Jazz Lab Band
  • November 19, 1970 - Millikin Civic Orchestra
  • February 11, 1971 - Millikin Choir
  • March 5, 1971 - Millikin Wind Ensemble
The cost was 35 cents per student, a portion of which covered the cost of transportation.  The first performance on October 29 filled the hall with 1,850 children.

Under the leadership of DAAC board president Louise Fathauer, the Youth Concert Program began expanding into drama, mime, dance, folk music and opera, the name was officially changed in 1975 to the Performing Arts Series for Students (P.A.S.S.).

Through the ongoing partnership with Kirkland Fine Arts Center and the Symphony Guild of Decatur, this program continues today and, over the years, has served an estimated half a million area school children.

This terrific program is designed to open doors to learning for children through the performing arts.  Each year, six to seven high-quality shows are chosen with young students (Pre-K to 6th grade) in mind.  Area teachers and home school groups can reserve seats for the shows that best suit the needs of their class.

Today the cost is only $5.00 per student. DAAC also send a study guide for each performance to teachers a few weeks prior to the event to inspire thought and discussion before and after the show.

A big part of what makes P.A.S.S. so special is that it provides an opportunity that many of the students may seldom get...
  • the chance to see an entertaining and educational show
  • provided by professional performing artists
  • in a world-class facility
  • on a university campus.

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