Welcome to Prairie Dance Theatre


The Story of Prairie Dance Theatre

What began as Oklahoma’s first professional Modern Dance Company founded by Beth Shumway in 1978 has evolved into a dance education organization currently serving Oklahoma City area students in 6 public elementary schools, 2 after school programs, and an advanced youth company.

Since 2010, the focus of Prairie Dance Theatre has been our Smart Moves programming.  Smart Moves is an in-school, comprehensive dance class offered alongside core curriculum classes to entire grade levels, at no cost to the schools or students participating.  This programming, modeled after the programs of the National Dance Institute, allows PDT to serve the largest amount of students with our resources. 

Prairie Dance Theatre believes that the dance instruction provided gives our students the gifts of self-confidence and community that all children deserve.  We are dedicated to engaging children in the arts and inspiring them toward excellence through our dance programs.  It is our desire to fill each classroom with dance professionals and live musicians to inspire the students of Oklahoma City.  We believe this incredible opportunity should be assessable to all students in the area. It is our hope that you’ll join us in our efforts to spread the gift of dance to as many students as possible!

PDT is an Allied Arts member agency that is fully funded by grants and community donations, and its operations are run by the Artistic Director and a working, volunteer Board of Trustees.

Artistic Director – Tonya Kilburn


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