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Educational Programs

Class Acts Education Series 2022-2023

 Welcome Back! 

The Class Acts Education programming for schools will resume this October! Each school year, The Carson Center welcomes close to 22,000 students in Pre-K through 12th grades to the theatre for school day programming.  Students bus in from local schools and from schools in outlying counties in Western Kentucky, Southern Illinois, Missouri, and Tennessee to experience live performing arts that complement their curriculum, expose them to arts and culture, and reinforce classroom learning.  Homeschools and seniors are welcome too!  After taking a break from field trips during the pandemic, students and schools are ready to return to The Carson Center, and we cannot wait to welcome them!

The 2022-2023 Class Acts Education Series will include stage performances based on favorite children's literature including Junie B. Jones, Pete The Cat, The Lightning Thief, and Llama Llama.  Older students will enjoy seeing Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice as well as all 7 Harry Potter books being brought to life on the stage.  The Peking Acrobats will delight and amaze audiences of all ages, while the Paducah Symphony Orchestra will get audiences rocking to classical music.


To make a reservation, click HERE


Read below about a grant opportunity!


TranspARTation Grant

This grant program enables Kentucky teachers and schools to provide their students with high quality arts experiences by funding transportation to programs provided by organizations in the TranspARTation Directory. Schools may apply for a grant based on the roundtrip mileage from their building to the facility and the number of buses necessary.

Funds are distributed on a reimbursement basis using the following formula: Roundtrip mileage from school to facility x $2 x number of buses = reimbursement amount (e.g., 55 miles roundtrip x $2 x 3 buses = $330).

Application Deadlines:
August 1, 2022 (for field trips October 1, 2022 - April 30, 2023)
October 31, 2022 (for field trips January 1, 2023 - April 30, 2023)

Who May Apply?

Any teacher at a Kentucky public or private school that supports preschool through grade 12.

 For more information or assistance:

 Samuel Lockridge


Arts Education Director, Kentucky Arts Council



  • Monday, February 13, 2023 - 9:30am
  • Monday, February 13, 2023 - 11:30am

Lights! Camera! Action! When Pete the Cat and his buddy Callie sneak into the Hollywood Studios, they get lost in the world of the movies. Join Pete, Callie, Ethel the Apatosaurus, and Robo-Pete in this rockin' new musical adventure that features several fun-filled Pete the Cat books including Cavecat Pete, Pete the Cat and the Treasure Map, and The Cool Cat Boogie

  • Thursday, March 2, 2023 - 10:00am

Published in 1813, Jane Austen's ultimate romantic comedy, Pride and Prejudice, has stood the test of time. As the Bennet sisters try to navigate their way toward love and marriage, Austen humorously skewers the hypocrisies and absurdities of the English class system, and puts the thoughts and feelings of her women characters front and center. Filled with unforgettable characters, this sharp social satire has it all: wit, romance and lots of dancing!

  • Monday, March 13, 2023 - 10:00am

From Australia and a Sydney Opera House Production, Meeting Mozart’ is a 50-minute theatre work that instills a love and appreciation of classical music in young children aged 2-10 years old and their families.
Through live music, stories and song, the show takes us on an interactive journey to explore and learn about the instruments, scores and themes that inspired Mozart to compose his greatest works, from variations on 'Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star' through to his great orchestral pieces. The production explores the instruments, scores and themes behind the music and life of one of the worlds most celebrated musicians, through an atmosphere that is fun, participatory and inclusive. Audiences will meet all the instruments in the ensemble along the way and discover some of Mozart’s best-known and beloved classical music. 

  • Monday, March 20, 2023 - 10:00am

This attraction has been called "incredible," "breathtaking," "stunning," and "quite unbelievable," to quote but a few
of the critics. As a special treat for fans of THE PEKING ACROBATS, this all new production now features performers
from THE SHANGHAI CIRCUS to create a very special Chinese Acrobatic extravaganza unlike any other!
The amalgamation of THE PEKING ACROBATS and THE SHANGHAI CIRCUS offers the unique talents and the very best of
both shows, suitable for playing arenas and concerts, fairs, theme parks, festivals, special and corporate events, and
casinos, in North America and the world over. With the addition of fresh elements from THE SHANGHAI CIRCUS, the
amalgamation of their incredible talents brings a whole new dimension to the ancient artistry of Chinese Acrobatics!
THE PEKING ACROBATS with THE SHANGHAI CIRCUS offers more than a glimpse into the fascinating traditions of the
Orient. It consists of sensational Chinese acrobatics, comedy, balancing feats and much more. A truly Oriental
spectacular and a show for all ages, the grace and precision of the acrobats are the triumph of years of dedicated
training and discipline. Chinese acrobatics are, in fact, more than just a series of stunts. Most of these acts clearly
demonstrate the achievement of perfection through finding harmony between mind and body - an ancient concept in
the Orient. The art form has been transformed from its simple “folk art” roots, to the spectacular entertainment event
we see today, by centuries of tradition.
THE PEKING ACROBATS new partners, THE SHANGHAI CIRCUS, have been entertaining audiences of all ages for over
thirty years in the United States including two six-week Broadway engagements. Recognized as being among the best
acrobatic shows that introduces young people to the magic of theatre, these acrobats were awarded Best Variety Show
in Branson, MO, due to their continual demonstration of the highest caliber of professional, trained athletes, jugglers
and contortionists. Their acts often trace their origins to traditional harvest festivals down through the centuries. It is
no wonder The New York Times reported, “THE SHANGHAI CIRCUS is providing entertainment in abundance!”
Each entertainer presents a range of demanding performances, most of them typifying the Chinese Circus and
consisting of a refreshing alternative to the usual Western traditions. From the dangerous climbing chair stack high
above the audience, about which the New York Times said, “these acrobats provide feats of circus art that reach
breathtaking heights of skill.” And just when you think you have seen it all, the highly skilled-roller skating duo takes
center stage with gravity defying feats of strength. All these and more surprises complete a marvelous and totally
exciting evening for theatre going “youngsters” from nine to ninety-two...As CBS News once reported “FANTASTIC!”
Over the years, company members of THE PEKING ACROBATS have toured throughout Europe, South and Central
America, Southeast Asia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Monte Carlo, Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, Israel and, of course,
extensively in the United States. The tremendous response of the audience is a testament to the popularity of their
unique brand of artistry, which transcends time to the delight of people of all ages!

  • Friday, March 24, 2023 - 10:00am

Bedtime has never been so exciting! It’s the end of the day for the Llama family. After a long day of adventures at the school and the store, Baby Llama can’t wait to put on his red pajamas. He and his friends, the toys, are ready to sing and dance their way to sleep...except...they need a bedtime story and a kiss goodnight and a drink of water. But, where’s Mama? This hilarious new musical based on the bestselling books by Anna Dewdney will warm every Llama and Llama Mama’s heart.

  • Friday, April 14, 2023 - 9:30am
  • Friday, April 14, 2023 - 11:30am

One universal element of music is rhythm. Composers and musicians play with elements of musical time, creating patterns of sound and silence that are expressive and exciting. A consistent groove can unite musicians, singers, and audiences in an experience of listening and performing together. Through the Link Up repertoire, hands-on activities, and a culminating interactive performance with The Paducah Symphony Orchestra, we will discover how the orchestra rocks. Orchestras across the country and around the world are taking part in Link Up. The Paducah Symphony Orchestra is one of more than 100 national and international organizations chosen for this program, provided by Carnegie Hall's Weill Music Institute. The PSO will provide professional development to local music teachers throughout the school year using high-quality program materials developed by Carnegie Hall. This instructional support enables teachers to prepare students for the concert, where they will have the opportunity to apply the musical concepts they have studied.

  • Tuesday, April 18, 2023 - 10:00am
  • Wednesday, April 19, 2023 - 10:00am


PLAYING TO SOLD OUT HOUSES all over the world, the Olivier Award nominated POTTED POTTER – The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff takes on the ultimate challenge of condensing all seven Harry Potter books (and a real life game of Quidditch) into seventy hilarious minutes. Even if you don’t know the difference between a horcrux and a Hufflepuff, POTTED POTTER will make you roar with laughter. Created by two-time Olivier Award-nominated actors Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner, Potted Potter is perfect for ages six to Dumbledore (who is very old indeed).

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