Not your typical dance studio, the Peacock Performing Arts Center, which was acquired by new owners last year, offers a “one-stop-shop” for music, dance, and the visual arts.
Acquired from former owner Logan Kemper Youmans in December 2014, the studio, located at 402 Ga. 247, Suite 1300, in Bonaire, has taken on new direction, according to co-owners Erin Atcheson Sullivan and Chris Pinto.
The studio already offered a variety of dance lessons, including genres such as ballet, jazz, tap dance, pointe, hip hop, modern musical theater, theater, acrobatic dance and lyric dance, as well. as the teaching of voice, piano, guitar and percussion and coaching competitions. However, just this summer, art was added to the offerings, according to Sullivan. In the visual arts, Sullivan said the teacher introduced students to the different principles of art to help them understand the different elements of artistic creations. She said they work in a variety of mediums and paint, draw and sculpt.
“(What) separates us from the rest… we offer dance, art and music under one roof,” Sullivan said. “We want to give people a place where they can dance, sing or play an instrument … or also create visual art … while they’re here.”
The studio also has a competitive dance team and has a total of 14 teachers. Additionally, Sullivan said around 200 families are involved in the studio.
Sullivan and Pinto explained that life often takes people in unexpected directions. For these two childhood friends, that’s exactly what happened when this business opportunity brought them both back to where their roots began.
Sullivan said that she and Pinto both grew up in Houston County and graduated from Houston County High School in 2004. According to Sullivan, they actually went to elementary school together and their mothers had. taught in the same school. They both went to Valdosta State University, where they both graduated in 2008.
Sullivan explained that she had been friends with Pinto’s wife, Christy, since college, and that they actually cohabited during college. At the Pinto’s wedding, Sullivan met her husband, Arthur.
Sullivan said that when the former studio owner approached her about the business opportunity, she was working as a marketing coordinator for Flash Foods. Sullivan said she loved her job and the company, but dancing was her passion, and she felt the business would also give her the opportunity to invest in the community where she grew up.
Pinto said that from eighth grade he always knew he wanted to own his own business. Although he started working in sporting goods, he said he quickly discovered that retail was not for him and his family. He went on to work at a YMCA in Florida as an Aquatic Director and at Augusta at a YMCA as a Senior Program Director, which he said seemed like a fantastic lead for him and his family when the opportunity came up. is presented to buy the studio.
“(We) jumped on board… and here we are,” he said.
Sullivan, who lives in Warner Robins with her husband, said she manages the artistic direction of the studio, including the vision for what they want to deliver. Pinto, who lives on Bonaire with his wife and their two sons, Carter, 21 months, and Collin, 7 months, said his duties are on the business side where he takes care of human resources, accounts receivable / invoicing and awareness in the community. He is also working to create partnerships with churches and daycares.
Sullivan said the studio is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., but most classes start around 4 p.m. and end around 9 p.m. The website is www.peacocksperformingarts.com and the contact number is 478-302-5642. They can also be found on Facebook.