PAPA Online

Currently running classes, clubs & coaching


Musical Theatre Dance 1

Instructor: Devereaux Merchant
Ages 10-12
11:00am – 12:00pm

Tuition is $20/class. (Zoom is available for $10/class)

Musical theater dance is the study of Broadway dance and dance styles, relying heavily on knowledge from ballet and jazz. This class will include center warm up stretches, isolations, and core strengthening, followed by across the floor technique and choreography. Students will also learn numbers from Broadway shows.

Jazz shoes required. As a prerequisite to this class, all Musical Theater Dance students must take at least 2 Ballet Conditioning classes a month.


Musical Theatre Dance 2

Instructor: Devereaux Merchant
Ages 12+
Sunday 1:30pm – 2:30pm
Tuition is $20/class. (Zoom is available for $10/class)

Musical theater dance is the study of Broadway dance and dance styles, relying heavily on knowledge from ballet and jazz. This class will include center warm up stretches, isolations, and core strengthening, followed by across the floor technique and choreography. Students will also learn numbers from Broadway shows.

Jazz shoes required.As a prerequisite to this class, all Musical Theater Dance students must take at least 2 Ballet Conditioning classes a month.



Self-Tape Coaching with Taylor

Instructor: Taylor Karin
15 RA Credits

Let me help you cultivate a fantastic self-tape repertoire! Because we know it’s an absolutely bonkers time to be an actor. With the huge influx of auditions that are now going virtual, the ability to quickly send in your best material is more important now than ever in this demanding, immediate, internet-age. Not to mention, we want all our best work to be on display for any passers-by (you never know where your next job will come from)! So over the course of a one-hour video call, let’s chat about it all. All you have to do beforehand is film a quick self tape for me to review before our session (don’t stress, I just want to see where you are and how you work)! Bring a notepad, and we’ll go over everything you need to know- technical tips, monologue material (and where to find it), what to wear, coaching for the camera, where/how to submit, and everything in between. Just because auditions have changed slightly, doesn’t mean they can’t be just as lucrative and positive for you. So let’s make this really special, and let’s get you excited to share your work and your talent with the world (wide web)!

Vocal Instruction with Amanda

Instructor: Amanda Munton
1 Hour: $85.00 10 RA Credits
3 One-Hour Sessions: $225.00 30 RA Credits
30 Minute Audition Prep: $45.00 10 RA Credits

Singing is one of the most personal forms of musical expression, given that our instrument is housed inside our bodies. As an instructor, I help students discover the possibilities of their unique instruments and educate them on the inner workings of the voice. Education and functional training can help develop a healthy vocal production that will facilitate ease in singing.

The field of musical theatre encompasses an enormous range of vocal styles, so students will also work to develop a flexible singing technique and understanding of the vocal demands each style requires. Students should expect to study a wide variety of music ranging from Golden Age through to contemporary pop musicals. Individuals who have a love of singing, follow a regular practice regime, and look for joy in the developmental process will thrive and be amazed at all the unique facets of the voice they can use to communicate their message through song.

Everyone has a story to tell – learn how to put your best voice forward!

Audition Critique with Bryan

Instructor: Bryan Knowlton
$100 – $150
15 RA Credits

Send in your musical theater video audition to a professional director, Bryan Knowlton, for a thorough and thoughtful critique. Bryan will review your video submission looking at it through the eyes of a director casting a show. He will offer pointers such as how to open your video submission, do’s and don’ts, lighting tips, sound advice, and how to make your personality shine.

Each video will come with written feedback within 7 days.

For an additional $50, you can schedule a 20 minute Zoom interview with Bryan for a Q&A about your video submission and feedback.


Bodyweight Workout with Holly Dayton

Instructor: Holly Dayton
All ages
Wednesdays at 2pm
$1 donation or more

Want to condition like one of our dancers? Come sweat out your anxiety and worries. In this fun and innovative bodyweight workout, Holly Dayton will lead you through a strength and conditioning program. Strengthen your core and get ready for when they let you back out into the world.

And guess what? All you need is your body and a few feet of space. No gym equipment required.

As always, our livestreams are free for Seniors & healthcare workers. Send an email to and request to be added.

Want access to all of our livestream events? Join our Patreon at the $50 or higher and get free access to all of our upcoming livestreams!

Meditation & Flow with Holly Dayton

Instructor: Holly Dayton
All ages – Beginner to Advanced
Sundays at 12:00 pm – May 31st, June 14th, June 28th
Sundays at 2:00 pm – June 7th, June 21st, July 5th

$1 donation or more

Stressed and needing a moment of calm and meditation? Holly can help you with that. In this class, Holly will lead you through a yoga flow that is sure to center you and start your week off right.

A donation of at least $1 gets you in, or if you’re a Patreon member of $50 a month or more you automatically get access to all of our events.

This event recurs every Sunday at 12:00 pm.

Levels: Beginner to advanced

Company Class with Andrea Lyons

Instructor: Andrea Lyons
All ages
Thursdays at 2pm
$1 donation or more

Our company class is an all- levels, all gender, one hour, musical theatre style Jazz class designed to keep our performing company on top of their technique during the run of a show.

Usually this class is strictly behind the scenes stuff, but you’re stuck at home, and we can’t perform for you in person, so why not train with our company from wherever you are? No need to get out of your pajamas. We can’t see you, but you can see us.

Resident Artist Andrea Lyons has kept our company and students in tip-top shape, most recently as the dance captain for A Chorus Line.

There will be about a 20 minute warm up, 30 minutes of across the floor combinations ending with center work combining skills from the class. There will be options offered for different skill levels so students in class and at home can decide what they’d like to try.

Make sure you have some room to move and turn your computer up nice and loud and follow along from the safety of your own home.

As always, our livestreams are free for Seniors & healthcare workers. Send an email to and request to be added.

Want access to all of our livestream events? Join our Patreon at the $50 or higher and get free access to all of our upcoming livestreams!


Jared Zirilli

Most recently seen on Broadway originating the role of Bruce Sudano, Donna Summer’s husband, in SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical. Broadway: Lysistrata Jones. Tours: Wicked, We Will Rock You. Off-Broadway: Romance Language (Ars Nova), Pretty Filthy (The Civilians), Fat Camp (Dodgers). Regional: Alfred Davidson in the World Premiere of Michael John LaChiusa’s RAIN (Old Globe), Dracula in the World Premiere of Dracula: A Comedy Of Terrors, SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical (La Jolla Playhouse), Lt. Sam Weinberg in A Few Good Men (Alley Theatre), Nate in LMNOP (Theatre Under The Stars, Goodspeed Musicals), Radames in AIDA (Drury Lane), Roger in RENT (Hangar Theatre), Matthew in the DC premiere of Altar Boyz, Giuseppe in The Light in the Piazza (Maine State Music Theatre). Readings: Vanity Fair and Pride & Prejudice (Bedlam), Tommy in New York New York (Susan Stroman), Rob Camiletti in The Cher Show, Vinnie in Life After High School (Roundabout), Elton in Clueless, Jacob in Twilight: The Musical (New World Stages). Television: Guest stars on Law And Order: SVU and Blue Bloods. Costars on Blindspot and Pan Am.

Kelley Davies 

Originally from Avon, CT, Kelley is a professional actress and Musical Theatre performer based in New York. She graduated from the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts in 2013 and from Emerson College’s BFA Musical Theatre program in 2017. Seen on Seacoast’s stage as Esmeralda in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Sherlock Holmes in Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes MysteryThe Producers and Mad Haus, Kelley has performed across several regional theaters in the New England area. Recently, she played Lydia Bennet in Austen’s Pride, a new musical of Pride and Prejudice, at the ACT of CT. Before COVID, Kelley was on contract with Norwegian Cruise Lines as Fleur de Lis in Prohibition the Musical. Kelley won the 2017 and 2018 New Hampshire Professional Theatre Awards for Best Supporting Actress for her work as Young Camille in The Waltz and Elaine in The Graduate, both at The Winnipesaukee Playhouse. Alongside performing, Kelley has a strong passion for teaching. From last summer’s PAPA Camp, you may remember her as “the silly dance teacher who loves 80’s aerobics”. Kelley is so excited for what this summer’s going to bring to the brilliant thespians of Portsmouth Academy of Performing Arts! For more on Kelley, visit

Bryan Knowlton

Mr. Knowlton’s extensive career has spanned from starring on Broadway in the 2006 Revival of “A CHORUS LINE” to appearing in multiple National Tours, Film and TV. He has also earned multiple Helen Hayes Nominations including Outstanding Lead Actor, as well as having collaborated with artists ranging from Meryl Streep, Sally Struthers, Savion Glover to Mario Lopez on “Dancing With Stars.” He is an award winning choreographer with credits that include: MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD (Kennedy Center American College Theatre Award “Outstanding Choreography”) CHICAGO (New Hampshire Theatre Award “Best Choreographer”), SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER (SALT Award nomination “Best Choreographer”), CURTAINS (BroadwayWorld Award Nomination “Best Choreography”), CABARET (New Hampshire Theatre Award “Best Choreographer” ONSTAGE Theatre Award Nomination “Best Choreography”), GYPSY (New Hampshire Theatre Award nomination “Best Choreographer”), THE ADDAMS FAMILY (New Hampshire Theatre Award nomination “Best Choreographer”), GHOST, HIGH SOCIETY, DAMN YANKEES, THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW, URINETOWN, HAIRSPRAY, RENT, GODSPELL, GUYS AND DOLLS, 9 to 5, CHICAGO, OLIVER! and WEST SIDE STORY. 

Regional Directing credits include: JOSEPH…DREAMCOAT (Broadwayworld Award Nomination “Best Director” & “Best Musical”) A CHORUS LINE (Spotlight Award nomination “Best Musical”), WEST SIDE STORY, THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, HAIR, MAMMA MIA, LA CAGE aux FOLLES, SMOKEY JOE’S CAFÉ, A CHRISTMAS STORY and A CHRISTMAS CAROL.

Upcoming projects include HELLO DOLLY, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST and the world premiere of VOTES FOR WOMEN.

Devereaux Merchant

Devereaux (Dev) Merchant is a graduate of Emerson College where she studied Theatre Education with a concentration in Acting. There she was a part of many productions including Sure Thing (Betty), FML: How Carson McCullers Saved My Life (Associate Director), XDance (Dance), and The little Prince (Assistant Director). She was also a participant in the Emerson Dance Company as well as on the board of the TYA theatre troupe Kidding Around. After her years at Emerson she traveled to Sitka, AK where she worked at Sitka Fine Arts Camp for a summer. Immediately following she moved to Maui, HI where she worked at The Maui Academy of Performing Arts as a Teaching Artist. A job in education brought her back to the East Coast. For the last few years she has been teaching movement classes, creating after school theatre programs, directing and choreographing for youth productions, and acting here in New Hampshire.

Kevin Mahaney

Kevin Mahaney has been working at the Rep since 2015. Prior to accepting his role as a Resident Artist in 2019, Kevin spent about 6 years in the education field. He was a paraprofessional, a job coach, and a teaching assistant. While creating a career in education, Kevin also spent most of his life working in the theater. He has been an improv/drama teacher, a puppeteer, an acting coach, a stage manager, and a director. Since working at the Rep, Kevin has starred in several main stage shows, directed and stage managed PAPA shows, taught classes, and worked on many Red Light events (Mad Haus, etc.). He is beyond grateful to be enforcing the mission of the Rep, which is to enrich the culture of the seacoast through the shared experience of live theater.

Olivia Fonseca

Olivia Fonseca is a rising senior at The University of New Hampshire where she is studying Musical Theatre. She has worked as a choreographer, assistant director, summer camp lead staff member, office administrator and director of a 6-7 year old summer program for the past 6 years at a theatre company in Massachusetts and has also been involved with the youth program at The Garrison Playhouse in Rollinsford, NH. A fun fact about Olivia is that she also is involved with pageantry and is currently your Miss Lake Sunapee Region  2020 under the Miss New Hampshire Scholarship Program. As a titleholder, Olivia promotes a social impact initiative throughout her year of service and the platform she has created is called “Step into the Spotlight: Building Confidence through the Performing Arts.” The goal of her social impact is to use the performing arts as a way to help children build confidence, learn to embrace their unique qualities, build relationships and learn life skills that they can apply to the real world. Olivia is beyond excited to be joining the Seacoast Rep/PAPA Team and is so thankful for the opportunity to be using her passion to help inspire others. 

Taylor Karin

Taylor Karin is a Film/TV and AEA eligible Theatre actress. She’s also a creator, and lover of all living things (except seagulls).

She’s done equity/regional theatre for the past few years- some of her favorites roles include Belle “Beauty and the Beast” (Prescott Park), Miranda “The Tempest” (Opera House Arts), Sheila “A Chorus Line” (Seacoast Rep).

Screen wise, she’s currently in pre-production for two feature films. One an awesome psychological thriller called “Gone Home”, the other a sci-fi flick called “Departure” with a 13M budget. She’s had films running the festival circuit for a few years (yay for a debut in Cannes, France!). Among these great big lucky endeavors, she’s the recipient of a couple awards for her screen work (Lead Performer for Film “Dog Days”, Best Acting Ensemble “Private Barry”.) Check our her website for more of the boring stuff:

Other than that, she love plants, singing, dancing, bruschetta, spontaneous spelling bees, and confessing meaningless secrets (example: in high school, Taylor non-ironically presented a self written monologue as notoriously depressed Sylvia Plath for an essay assignment. She demanded to read the melodrama for the whole class.)

Taylor loves to collaborate with people, and she’s so looking forward to meeting and working with you!

For questions about any of our Portsmouth Academy of Performing Arts offerings, please email