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What is PACE?

PACE is for Everyone

PACE, the Performing Arts Curriculum Experience, is a curricular elective program which offers students four progressive years of study in dance, music, and theatre. Students learn to be dancers, choreographers, musicians, vocalists, instrumentalists, composers, directors, script writers, and actors, but they also make lifelong friends, build confidence, and come away with a passion and understanding of the arts. Students have the opportunity to participate in extra-curricular performances as well as lighting, sound design, set building, and other production projects, or they can simply participate in class shows. Whether you've never stood on stage before, or are a lifelong performer, PACE has a place for you.

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“PACE basically defined my whole high school experience. It gave me an outlet to be who I was, and gave me the means to hone my skills in certain areas and become better. The people I met in PACE helped me become a better person, and made my adolescence more bearable than it would have been otherwise.”

- Danny Regan, PACE Class of 2019

The PACE Curriculum

A Fulfilling and Engaging Four-Year Performing Arts Experience



This course provides basic skills in the three performing arts: Dance, Music, and Theater. Through learning the building blocks of each art form, you will increase your powers of concentration, focus, energy, and sharpen your perceptions, learn how to take initiative, and work cooperatively with others. In January, students will create and produce the “PACE 1 Show” - an evening showcase of dance, songs, and scenes.


The goal of PACE 2, in dance, music, and theatre, is to strengthen performance skills through the continuation of rotating between dance, music and theater classes. Near the end of this full-year course, students will choose a specialty area for their final project—a public performance of the “PACE 2 Show.”



This course is for those who have developed improvisational and technical skills and the ability to work as an ensemble in dance, music, and theatre in their first two years of PACE. It is a full-year course devoted to choreographing, writing, composing, performing, sharpening technique, and otherwise understanding and practicing the art of dance, music, and theatre. Each area of study includes a cooperative project and performance with elementary school students.


PACE 4 students have the opportunity to choose between Advanced Theater, Music, or Dance. The theater curriculum focuses on advanced acting techniques,
playwriting, directing, and theatre history. The dance curriculum includes study of contact improvisation, choreography, and modern dance technique. PACE 4 Music focuses on studying GarageBand, Pro Tools, and Sibelius to create compositions, arrangements, sound recordings, podcasts, and scores of sheet music.


PACE Faculty

The PACE program is headed by a dedicated team of experienced professionals who are there for their students every step of the way. Students are able to build strong, and lasting relationships with their PACE teachers, as they remain the same throughout all four years of the program.


Zachary Moore


Zachary Moore came to MHS nine years ago.  Before joining PACE he taught at various schools in Texas, at NYU, and at Manhattanville College where he created  their theatre education major as well as directed their Shakespeare in the Castle production series.  Mr. Moore looks forward to continuing PACE's tradition of excellence in arts education with a new generation of students.  Mr. Moore has a BFA from The University of Texas at Austin and an MA from New York University.


Allison Parsley


Allison Parsley is the dance teacher and PACE Dept. Chair at MHS. Allison holds an MFA in Dance from The Ohio State University, an MA in Dance & Dance Education from NYU, & a BA from Franklin & Marshall College. Ms. Parsley loves seeing students commit to dance, something she knows they may not be comfortable with at first. She loves hearing that something that was worked on in class changed a students' perspective on dance or on their own abilities.


William Derby


William S. Derby began teaching PACE Music in 2000. A graduate of Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, OH (B.M.), and Teachers College, Columbia University (M. A.), he teaches guitar, keyboard, production, songwriting, and voice as part of the PACE Music curriculum. Mr. Derby aspires to cultivate a creative music program in PACE, empowering and supporting students to take ownership of their musical lives.

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