In 1970, a group of volunteers saw a need in the region for live children’s theatre – to expand the imaginations, stir the creativity and inspire the dreams of area youths – and Performing Arts for Children was born. Decades of performances have inspired multiple generations of area children, and today we see many families who are bringing second and even third generations to the shows.
From the beginning, Performing Arts for Children has had a strong bond with Washburn University’s Theatre Department. Then-Chairman Hugh McCausland was involved in the initial planning for Performing Arts for Children, and the university has remained a major sponsor to this day. Each year, Performing Arts for Children offers scholarships to theatre students who in turn assist with house management, lighting and sound during the performances.
The mission of Performing Arts for Children is to provide live, quality children’s theatre at an affordable price in order to present unique cultural opportunities for children in the Topeka area.
Performing Arts for Children is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and consists of a volunteer board of directors – many on this board are patrons who have come to performing arts programs in the past and have become part of our dedicated volunteer effort. Each board member serves a minimum three-year term, and often our members elect to remain on the board for many terms.
Performing Arts for Children’s season runs from fall through early spring. A variety of plays, stories, puppetry and music appeal to audiences ranging from 3 to 11 years of age, and beyond. A distinct feature of Topeka Performing Arts for Children’s programming is its focus on interactivity; many of the productions call for audience participation of some sort, and we have become well-known for our meet-and-greet opportunities with the performers after each show.
Princess Frog-a-Lot is the mascot for Topeka Performing Arts for Children, and she is prominent on our fliers and programs. She also appears in person at each performance to the delight of many of the children.
Season Ticket Donations
Performing Arts for Children donates season tickets to area youth organizations – such as Easter Seals Capper Foundation, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, TARC, Topeka Rescue Mission, Kansas Neurological Institute and others – to ensure that area children have an opportunity to experience the joy of live theater.