among the community’s cultural landmarks,
the Akron Civic Theatre has a rich and spectacular history.
It has provided the community with a venue for quality
entertainment and live performances for over seventy
that time, hundreds of thousands of people have been
thrilled by various theatrical presentations, both
on stage and
The theater was built in 1929 by Marcus Loew and
by famed theater architect, John Eberson. The interior
was fashioned after a Moorish castle featuring Mediterranean
decor, including medieval carvings, authentic European
antiques and Italian alabaster sculptures.
its size, the Civic is one of only five remaining
atmospheric theaters in the country where patrons experience
twinkling star-lit sky and intermittent clouds
moving across the
horizon, all while sitting inside the auditorium.
by John Eberson and built by Marcus Loew in 1929,
the Civic Theatre has entertained Akronites
for 75 years.
Restoration and Expansion
June 2001, the Akron Civic Theatre closed its doors
for the most comprehensive restoration and expansion project
in its history. Over the
course of the next sixteen months, just over $19 million was spent bringing
the theater up to modern performance and patron standards, and to restoring
its failing 70-year old infrastructure.
Following its re-opening
in November 2002, the New Civic, along with its partner The
University of Akron’s E. J. Thomas Hall, continued
to play a significant leadership role in downtown revitalization.
In May 2003, the Civic began a partnership with the City
of Akron to program and operate Lock 3 Live! a new outdoor
performance venue featuring more than 80 events and attractions
scheduled between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
The success of the Akron Civic Theatre is a testament, particularly during
these difficult economic times, to the support of our community and the vision
of its leaders. Support for the Civic has come to be understood for what it
is - an investment in our community that fuels the economy and drives downtown
revitalization by hosting the best in local, national, international entertainment
Behind a restoration
and expansion of this magnitude stands a litany of organizations
and individuals who have worked diligently in the belief
this project would make the community a better place to live, work and play.
This help came locally, regionally and nationally.
We appreciate the
support of Summit County and the Summit County Port Authority,
with particular appreciation
to former Executive Tim Davis, current Executive Jim McCarthy and all the
members of County Council. We also thank the State
of Ohio, Governor Bob Taft, former
Senator Roy Ray, Senator Kevin Coughlin, Representatives Brian Williams
and John Widowfield and the entire Summit County delegation,
the City of Akron,
Mayor Don Plusquellic and all of City Council, the federal program“ Save
America’s Treasures,” Congressman Ralph Regula and former Congressman
Tom Sawyer. Private sector leadership grants came from the Knight, GAR, Brennan
and Corbin Foundations, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, OMNOVA Solutions
and FirstEnergy, as well as leadership gifts from many individuals and corporations.
The Civic also appreciates the support of Honorary Campaign Co-Chairs Ann and
David Brennan and Francia and Fred Albrecht, and Campaign Co-chairs Nancy Brennan
and Sean O’Connor.
They, along with
over fifty volunteers, continue to work to raise
the funds necessary to complete this project.