Information on:

Akron Civic Theatre

182 South Main Street

History of Akron Civic Theatre: 

Long recognized 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 years.

During that time, hundreds of thousands of people have been thrilled by various theatrical presentations, both on stage and on screen.

The theater was built in 1929 by Marcus Loew and designed by famed theater architect, John Eberson. The interior structure was fashioned after a Moorish castle featuring Mediterranean decor, including medieval carvings, authentic European antiques and Italian alabaster sculptures.

Among facilities of its size, the Civic is one of only five remaining atmospheric theaters in the country where patrons experience a twinkling star-lit sky and intermittent clouds moving across the horizon, all while sitting inside the auditorium.

Restoration and Expansion

In 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 and events.

Behind a restoration and expansion of this magnitude stands a litany of organizations and individuals who have worked diligently in the belief that 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.


Brittany Henkel

Wednesday, May 9, 2018
Beautiful theater. It is so worth the drive. We had a fun time. The concession stand did not have very many choices which was kind of disappointing. No matter we have sat we have been able to see the stage and the show. It is about an hour drive for us and it is always worth it. Very clean including the bathrooms. I do wish there was more in the area but it still is always fun.

Paul Ergh

Saturday, June 23, 2018
This is a well restored theater that is in good condition. We saw a performance of Jesus Christ Superstar and the house sound system, lights, and organ used all worked well. The bathrooms and concessions had some issues but that wasn't important to me so it didn't affect my rating. The bathroom was large, clean, and everything worked but I believe there was only Men's room and there was a wait for it at a pretty small show. The lines for concessions were long so I ended up skipping it.

bec obie

Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Very beautiful, they still have an organ in wonderful condition, the ceiling is painted dark as though it was the night sky and clouds are projected to the ceiling. There are many balconies, some with beautiful detail in stone, metal, and paint, before your event you could stop by the diamond deli just a walk down the street, and after the event, the theatre is right next to a wonderful nut shop.

Josh Troche

Thursday, June 7, 2018
This truly is a remarkable venue that's very much a standout landmark of Akron. There's some amazing artwork inside and it's tough to find a bad seat in the place. It still needs some restoration to achieve it's former glory, but it's a great place to see any show that's there.


Wednesday, June 27, 2018
A really cool venue that isn't giant. We even parked for free. Saw Brian Culbertson and he sounded great in the theatre.

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