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Pasco Schools’ theater series kicks off with the Florida Orchestra

The 2019-2020 season starts with a visit from the Florida Orchestra. Tickets are on sale now.
Florida Orchestra music director Michael Francis quizzes students in the audience about the country origins of composer Peter Heidrich's Happy Birthday Variations, during a youth educational concert program held in 2018 at the Center for the Arts in Wesley Chapel. The concert was once of several educational offerings through the Pasco Schools' 'Learn It Live' series.  The Florida Orchestra will open the 2019-2020 'Learn It Live' series at arts centers on the River Ridge and Wesley Chapel High school campuses.
Florida Orchestra music director Michael Francis quizzes students in the audience about the country origins of composer Peter Heidrich's Happy Birthday Variations, during a youth educational concert program held in 2018 at the Center for the Arts in Wesley Chapel. The concert was once of several educational offerings through the Pasco Schools' 'Learn It Live' series. The Florida Orchestra will open the 2019-2020 'Learn It Live' series at arts centers on the River Ridge and Wesley Chapel High school campuses. [ MICHELE MILLER | Times ]
Published Sep. 2, 2019

Each year, the Pasco Schools Center for the Arts rolls out an educational series of shows called “Learn it Live.” The shows are offered intermittently throughout the school year at art centers on the River Ridge High and Wesley Chapel High school campuses.

Learn it Live shows are open to public, private, home-school and e-school students. Members of the community are welcome to attend.

“In addition to serving the schools with their programming, we also serve the community, so anyone who wants to rent the centers for their own performances can do that," said Thomas Viking, program director for fine arts for Pasco County Schools. “We also put on our own programming with educational shows and events that are pertinent to our students and community.”

Shows offered through the Learn it Live series include “before and after” lesson plans for teachers to use in the classroom, tying the arts with curriculum standards, Viking said.

And they give students the opportunity to learn proper theater etiquette while seeing a live performance in a professional theater at an affordable price. Tickets typically range from $4 to $7.

“We try to make things, as often as we can, connected with curriculum standards whether it be math, science, poetry, or whatever,” Viking said. “But we’re also just trying to give kids the opportunity to come on out and see different kinds of performances they might not otherwise be exposed to. That’s really what it’s all about.”

Center for the Arts at River Ridge, 11646 Town Center Road, New Port Richey. Call (727) 774-7382 or go to centerfortheartsriverridge.com

The Florida Orchestra: One Giant Leap, 10:30 and 11:45 a.m. Oct. 16. $7. For grades K-12. The orchestra celebrates the 50th anniversary of the the Apollo 11 moon landing.

Elephant & Piggies’s We Are in a Play! Nov. 5-6. $5. Prekindergarten-grade 3. This musical experience is based on the award-winning books of Mo Willems.

Holiday Traditions Around the World, Dec. 16-17. $5. Grades Prekindergarten-brade 5. A rollicking musical tour that features dances, songs and stories from Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and more.

Jack Hartmann Concert, Jan. 27. $5. Grades Prekindergarten-grade 3. Children’s singer and songwriter Jack Hartmann plays some old favorites and new selections focusing on counting and language and social skills.

Chicken Dance, Feb. 18. $5. Grades K-4. ArtsPower’s musical portrays the colorful story of two chickens on a mission to win the barnyard talent contest.

Rapunzel, April 21-22. $4. Grades K-5. This musical, based on the classic fairy tale, features a long-haired beauty, a prince and an evil witch.

Center for the Arts at Wesley Chapel, 30651 Wells Road, Wesley Chapel. Call (813) 794-8772 or go to centerfortheartswesleychapel.com.

The Florida Orchestra: One Giant Leap, 10:30 and 11:45 a.m. Oct. 15. $7. For grades K-12. The orchestra celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.

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The Monster Who Ate My Peas, 10:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. Oct. 31. $5. Grades Prekindergarten-grade 3. This production by ArtsPowers is based on the award-winning book by Danny Schnitzlein about a young boy who does not want to eat his peas.

The Nutcracker, 10:30 a.m. Dec. 6. $7. Grades 3-12. All American Classical Ballet presents the story of a toy nutcracker that transports a young girl named Clara to a magical world.

Holiday Traditions Around the World, 10:30 a.m. Dec. 18. $5. Grades K-6. Features dances and songs from Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and more.

Florida Treasures, 10:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. Feb. 13. $5. Grades K-8. This presentation, by Atlantic Coast Theatre, takes the audience on a fun-filled journey through Florida history.

Hop 2 It Music presents, Jack Hartmann’s Tune Up the Learning and Fun, 10:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. Feb. 25. $5. Grades K-5. Children’s singer and songwriter Jack Hartmann plays some old favorites and new selections focusing on reading, math. science and social skills.









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