The three major arts presenters at E.J. Thomas Hall are offering a first-time collaborative party for the public Thursday as well as a teaser regarding an announcement about the hall’s ticket office.

Tuesday Musical, the Akron Symphony and Broadway in Akron will host a 2016-17 season preview party from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Thursday at E.J. Thomas Hall.

The free event, to be held on the E.J. stage at 198 Hill St. at the University of Akron, will include refreshments as well as season highlight information and special subscription offers from each group.

Thursday’s collaborative event is aimed at getting people into the hall, selling subscriptions and continuing to reverse confusion or negative perceptions that members of the community have had since July 2015, when the University of Akron eliminated E.J. staff and closed the box office as part of a $40 million cost-cutting move.

“Ultimately, the great goal is, hopefully, we get enough of a buzz that we can counteract some of that ‘the-hall-is-still-closed’ thinking process,’’ said Jarrod Hartzler, executive director of Tuesday Musical.

“All three of us, the resident organizations, want to invite the community to learn about all of our seasons and experience the excitement of all that E.J. Thomas Hall has to offer,” Hartzler said. “Plus, we have exciting news to share that will make ticket buying easier for our audience members."

Guests will have the added fun of being on the E.J. stage and seeing the hall’s scene shop and green room.

“We’re happy to open the doors at E.J. Thomas Hall to provide our audiences with a behind-the-scenes look” at the performance venue, said Paul Jarrett, executive director of the Akron Symphony.

Parking will be free in the surface lot across from E.J. and in the adjoining deck. Entrances will be through the ticket office lobby off the E.J. parking deck or through the blue stage door at the corner of Buchtel Avenue and Hill Street.

No reservations are necessary. For details, call Tuesday Musical at 330-761-3460 or the Akron Symphony at 330-535-8131.

Kickoff party

In more Akron Symphony news, the organization will hold a season kickoff party at Prime 93 Sept. 9 with live music by Helen Welch. The event at 4315 Manchester Road, New Franklin, starts with a patron pre-party at 6 p.m. ($125 each), followed by the party at 7 p.m. ($100 each). Evening attire is suggested. Reservations are due Monday. Call 330-535-8131.

Dance chance

DanceCleveland will offer a Professional Development Day for dance students ages 12 to 18 and their parents from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 10 at the fifth floor of Cleveland State University’s Middough Building, 1901 E. 13th St., Cleveland. The day is designed to offer tips and answer questions about dance degrees and career options.

The day will include the choice of a contemporary master class with David Shimotakahara of GroundWorks DanceTheater or a ballet master class with Bobby Wesner of Neos Dance Theatre. A panel discussion will be included, featuring teachers and speakers from GroundWorks, Verb Ballets, Neos, Inlet Dance theatre, Dancing Wheels Company, Dianne McIntyre, Playhouse Square, Kent State University School of Theatre and Dance, Cleveland State University Dance Program, the University of Akron Dance Program, Hathaway Brown School and more.

Registration deadline is Thursday. Call 216-991-9000 or see Each student registered must have a parent or guardian present. Cost is $55, which includes lunch for two.

Bedtime stories

Adults like bedtime stories too, right?

Wandering Aesthetics theater company will offer just that with “B4 Bed: Stories for Adults” from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Firestone Park Branch Library, 1486 Aster Ave., Akron. Storyteller Kyle Jozsa will read science fiction episodes from Kurt Vonnegut Jr.’s Harrison Bergeron and Robert Heinlein’s All You Zombies at the free event.

To register, see or call 330-724-2126. Future B4 Bed events at the Firestone branch will include horror/mystery Oct. 4 and humor/fantast Nov. 1, both at 6:30 p.m.

Audition call

Ohio Shakespeare Festival hasn’t released the title of its first production at Greystone Hall yet, but here’s a hint: The theater’s holding auditions for three featured ensemble actors who are primarily fighters/swordsmen. Men or women with previous fight experience are needed to learn fight choreography in eight rehearsals Oct. 2-20.

The show, whose title is expected to be announced next week, will run Oct. 21-30. All actors will be paid a stipend. To request an audition, email and include a headshot and acting resume.

Arts writer Kerry Clawson may be reached at 330-996-3527 or Like her on Facebook at or follow her on Twitter @KerryClawsonABJ.