About PCA's Theatre program
Prestonwood Christian Academy has an award-winning and nationally-recognized theatre program that strives to provide Middle and Upper School students with a creative and multidisciplinary art form.
One of our objectives is to prepare serious theatre students for a future career in the theatre if that is their desire. Beyond that, by participating in theatre, students will gain preparation for whatever path they choose in life by creating good work habits, time management skills, poise and cooperative learning experiences. We believe that the arts are an epicenter of influence in our culture today and Christians need to be leading the way in creativity and excellence.
- Middle School
- Upper School
- Technical Theatre
- Performance Opportunities
- Competitions & Awards
Theatre for PCA Middle School students starts in Seventh Grade. Both Seventh and Eighth Grade students may participate in Theatre I in the Fall semester. Theatre II is by audition only and available to Eighth Grade students. These students prepare a One-Act Play and compete in the PSIA District Competition during their Spring semester. See the Competition and Awards tab to view the latest results.
Students may join the Jr. ITS group starting in Seventh Grade and at the discretion of the MS Theatre Director, they compete in the ITS State Festival in November.
Theatre Arts I is an introductory course for high school students. It covers the basic foundations of theatre: improvisation, comedy, tragedy, theatre history, musical theatre, classical theatre, monologues and scene work as well as writing and directing.
Theatre Arts II students build upon the basic writing and performing skills developed in Theatre I. In addition, students learn about theatre production. The class performs and produces a children’s theatre production.
Honors Theatre Arts III and Theatre Arts III are designed for the advanced student. Each student develops his/her directing skills through directing labs. Students work with others by directing and acting in scenes. Each student directs a short one-act play at the end of the semester to be premiered at the annual PCA One-Act Festival. Honors students will have additional assignments to complete their honors credit requirements.
Honors Theatre Arts IV students focus the course around the student’s area of interest. This can include but is not limited to: performance, directing, research and theatre design. Additional assignments will be included to fulfill the honors requirements.
Theatre Practicum is designed for the student looking for practical application in the theatre arts. The student is required to work in some capacity on a PCA Theatre production.
PCA’s Technical Theatre classes offer an overview of the technical theatre world by exploring the duties of stage technicians as well as building and designing sets for PCA’s fall plays and spring musicals. Units of study include theatre equipment and operations, scenery and stagecraft, scale drawing and floor plans, painting and construction techniques, the use of special effects, theatre safety, production schedules and timelines, and the function of technical stage personnel in production work.
PCA Plano - Upper School Theatre
Pamela Hurt is the Upper School theatre teacher and director and has taught theatre at Prestonwood Christian Academy since 1998. Her classes include Theatre Arts I (Theatre Appreciation), Theatre Arts II (Children’s Theatre), Theatre Arts III and Honors Theatre Arts III (Directing), Theatre Practicum (Applied Theatre Training), Theatre Arts IV and Honors Theatre Arts IV (Advanced Theatre Study).
She has directed many productions in her teaching career, including Annie; Robin Hood; Seussical; Don’t Drink the Water; Crazy for You; The 39 Steps; The Drowsy Chaperone; The Man Who Came to Dinner; Into the Woods; Romeo + Juliet; 42nd Street; Pride and Prejudice; Little Women: the Musical (chosen by USA Today Weekend as the best high school musical in the state of Texas in 2008); The Miracle Worker; Thoroughly Modern Millie; Godspell; Bye Bye Birdie; Lily, the Felon’s Daughter; The Music Man; Fiddler on the Roof; Frankenstein; The Taming of the Shrew; The Importance of Being Earnest and You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. Pam also enjoys writing and composed an old west adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew in 2003 and a modern adaptation of Romeo + Juliet in 2009. She taught beginning and professional teen actors in camera acting at KD College Conservatory of Film and Dramatic Arts in Dallas for fifteen years. In September 2010, she appeared in Imaginary Ink’s production of Leaving Iowa at The Courtyard Theatre in Plano, TX.
Pam is the director of PCA’s troupe 6605 of the International Thespian Society. In International Thespian Society competition, she has had over 150 students advance from state to nationals in the past eight years at the International Thespian Festival at the University of Nebraska. Her students have been named National Individual Event Showcase Champions seven times, including Group Musical (2006), Monologue (2008), Group Musical (2009), Monologue (2009), Group Musical (2010), Group Musical (2011) and Group Musical (2014). At the Texas Thespian State Festival, she has had two state champions in Group Musical (2009 and 2010). Furthermore, two of her theatre students were selected to be a part of the National Cast and Crew of Thoroughly Modern Millie (2007) and Hairspray (2008).
Ms. Hurt holds an undergraduate degree in Theatre from Liberty University and a M.A. in Communications from Regent University with an emphasis in theatre and camera acting.
PCA Plano - Middle School Theatre & Upper School Technical Theatre
Seth Monhollon grew up in Abilene, TX. After graduating from Baylor University with a BFA in Theatre Performance, he moved to Dallas and immediately began work at WaterTower Theatre. There, he built the sets for their 2015-2016 season: Sweet Charity; the world premiere of Creep; Sexy Laundry; The Lord of the Flies; The Big Meal; and Outside Mullingar.
After that, he took an apprenticeship with Theatre Three, where he dabbled in a myriad of fields. As apprentice, he constructed sets for The Novelist; The Wedding Singer; the regional premiere of Laugh; Passing Strange; and A Little Night Music. That season, he took on the roles of Assistant Stage Manager and Properties Master for Susan and God and the world premiere of Daylight. After Theatre Three’s 2016-2017 season, Seth was asked to become the Assistant Technical Director. As ATD, he worked side-by-side with the Technical Director to construct the sets for The Minotaur; Adding Machine: A Musical; I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change!; Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; and She Kills Monsters.
Seth is also an actor in the area: his voice can be heard in One Piece and Fairy Tail from FUNimation Productions, and he has been seen in various roles at Theatre Three, Shakespeare Dallas, Genesis Children’s Theatre, and Edge Dance Performing Arts. Seth is ecstatic to call PCA his home!
PCA North - Middle School & Upper School Theatre
Laurel Peabody grew up near Los Angeles, California. Her training began strictly in dance before she found her love for theatre. From the age of three, she was trained in classical ballet, pointe, and tap. She was trained by influential ballet instructors such as Jill Sanzo, who danced with Gene Kelly and Julie Andrews, Thais Leavitt, who was a principal dancer in the Dortmund Opera Ballet of Germany, and Jennifer Nairn, a protege of both Bob Fosse and Balanchine. In tap, she was trained by Mark Knowles, a respected director/choreographer who is also the author of The Tap Dance Dictionary and Tap Roots: The Early History of Tap Dancing. She accomplished certification up to a Level Six of The Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in classical ballet, was the captain of her studio’s tap company, and was a member of her studio’s junior ballet corps.
Laurel’s pursuit of dance led her to her true passion for theatre while in high school. This brought her to Baylor University where she earned her BFA in Theatre Performance. While at Baylor she excelled in Shakespearian theatre, postmodern collaborations, movement based theatre, and choreography. She was the dance captain for Dirty Rotten Scoundrels the Musical and was the Movement Coach forShipwrecked! An Entertainment. She also performed in the cast of One Third of a Nation, Twelfth Night, and multiple devised pieces. Her other involvement at Baylor included membership in Alpha Delta Pi sorority and dancing with Baylor Dance Company.
Upon graduation in 2015, Laurel has been directing theatre and teaching dance in North Texas. She has directed fourteen youth theatre productions in Plano at the The Courtyard Theatre including Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, The Addam’s Family Musical, Spamalot the Musical, Elf the Musical, Disney’s Peter Pan, Junie B. Jones, Aladdin, The Lion King, Into the Woods, and Willy Wonka. She has also continued choreography through McMillen High School’s show choir and multiple dance/theatre productions at award winning Edge Dance & Performing Arts Center. She has also used her creative skills to adapt several literary works to dance including The Brother’s Grimm’s Rapunzel, The Polar Express, and Peter Pan. She also participated in the origination of the Waco division of Christian Youth Theatre as well as instructing at The Salvation Army’s Summer Conservatory for the Arts and Frisco’s School of Music & Performing Arts.
Laurel is excited to join Prestonwood Christian Academy’s Fine Arts staff where she will teach the Theatre I and Theatre II electives. She will lead PCA's Jr. Thespian Troupe #88975 with students attending and competing at the State and National Festival. She will also direct PCA's middle school One-Act Play that competes in the PSIA One-Act Play competition each year at the district and state level. Laurel currently lives in Plano with her husband, Daniel and dog, Squire.
Fall Play and Spring Musical
PCA has a long, proud tradition of excellence in theatrical productions. Plays and musicals are well attended and highly regarded in the PCA community. Students have the opportunity to audition for a play in the fall semester and a musical in the spring semester. PCA Theatre productions take place at the Eisemann Center in Richardson or the MCL Grand Theatre in Lewisville.
International Thespian Society
Upper School students have the opportunity to join the theatre honor society as part of the International Thespian Society. Students can earn eligibility for ITS (Troupe 6605) through participation in the PCA extra-curricular theatre program. Students have to work on two PCA productions in performance or tech crew to earn eligibility. A student who is a member of Junior ITS will need to work on at least one production their Eighth Grade year if they want to be inducted into ITS for their freshman year.
ITS provides theatre students with opportunities such as competing at the Texas Thespian State Festival, the International Thespian Festival, attending theatre workshops and performances, auditioning for college theatre programs around the country, and several social gatherings and community service events throughout the year.
Prestonwood Christian Academy students who participate in the International Thespian Society have received college scholarships and recruitment from many colleges, universities, conservatories and art schools across the country such as Southern Methodist University, Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, Ouachita Baptist University, Savannah College of Art and Design, Boston Conservatory, Baylor University, Hofstra University, Liberty University, Texas Christian University, Oklahoma City University, University of North Texas, and Belmont University.
Middle School students can participate in Junior ITS (Troupe 88975) their seventh and eighth grade years by fulfilling the requirements for induction.
ITS Honors Graduate:
The International Thespian Society (ITS) is the Educational Theatre Association’s national student honor organization. The mission of ITS is to recognize student achievement and excellence in the theatre arts.
To qualify for the ITS Honor cords, the graduate must:
- Be an active member of PCA’s ITS troupe 6605
- Attend the state and/or national convention each year past induction
- Participate in two PCA theatre productions, on stage or behind the scenes, prior to induction
- Participate in at least one PCA theatre production, on stage or behind the scenes, each year after induction
- Graduate at an Honor level (60-119 points), National Honor level (120-179 points) or International Honor level (180+ points). 1 point equals 10 hours of work in theatre.
- Attend at least 75% of all required meetings, community outreach and events
- Graduate “Cum Laude” (3.0-3.49) or higher and students with a 3.5 GPA will become national Vice President's List Scholars and students with a 4.0 GPA are awarded the national President's List Scholar distinction.
2019 - 20
- 24 Upper School student ITS National Qualifiers
- *Betty Buckley winner for Best Leading Actress
- *Betty Buckley nomination for Best Play
- **Betty Buckley nomination for Best Leading Actor
*Received for PCA's production of Silent Sky
**Received for PCA's production of Godspell
2018 - 19
- 26 Upper School student ITS National Qualifiers
- *Betty Buckley winner for Best Leading Actress
- *Betty Buckley nomination for Best Play
- *Betty Buckley Best leading Actor
- Jr. ITS - Solo Musical and costume construction received superior ratings at District
*Received for PCA's production of You Can't Take It With You
2017 - 18
- 6 Upper School student ITS National Qualifiers
- Middle School Theatre placed 2nd - PSIA State One-Act Play Competition
- Middle School Theatre placed 2nd - PSIA District One-Act Play Competition
- 19 Upper School student ITS National Qualifiers
- Middle School Theatre placed 3rd - PSIA District One-Act Play Competition
- Jr. ITS Group Musical and Solo Musical received superior ratings - ITS State
2015 - 16
2014 - 15
- ITS State Champions - Group Musical
- 33 Upper School student ITS and Jr. ITS National Qualifiers
- Middle School Theatre placed 1st - PSIA District One-Act Play Competition
A Murder Is Announced
Peter and the Starcatcher
Beauty and the Beast
Singin' in the Rain
MS One Act Play Cast - May 2018
Placed 2nd in State One Act Play Competition
Theatre asks the questions, shows the possibilites and provides hope with redemptive storytelling. At PCA, theatre students are encouraged to look deeper into the heart of the story they are telling.
Pam Hurt, Upper School Theatre
Theatre is a place every student can use their gifts...it's about combining all of the arts to tell the greatest stories.Meg Parker-Wilson, Director of Communication Arts
The Man Who Came To Dinner
Don't Drink The Water
Matthew Buttry, Landon Sibley, Lauren Bridgeman