SingStark! has been making music in Stark County for 80 years, but now it’s got a new name and a new sound. You know SingStark! as VOCI, which was originally founded as the Canton Civic Opera in 1939. The choral organization for decades was known for its operas and musicals, and then it transitioned into a chorus that performed a handful of times a season.
For more than eight decades, the Canton Players Guild Theatre has been an integral source of arts and entertainment in the Canton community. As one of the oldest volunteer-driven theaters in the country, the Canton Players Guild Theatre was formed in 1932 by Bernard Truxton, an executive with the Jewish Welfare League, and his wife, Florence.
The Canton Museum of Art is more than just a place to look at pretty things hanging on the wall. In the past five years, the museum has increased the number of events it hosts and has expanded its free offerings and outreach activities to make the museum more accessible. In 2020, it will celebrate 85 years of being a cultural resource.
A sparkling jewel of downtown Canton, the Palace Theatre has one foot in history and the other very much in the present. Built in 1926 as an ornate movie palace, the theater is steeped in vintage charm, from its red velvet stage curtain to the Kilgen pipe organ that rises from the orchestra pit, from the vibrantly colored neon signage and beckoning marquee to the projected clouds on the auditorium ceiling.
The mission of the Canton Symphony Orchestra is both simple and lofty. “Perform and present at the highest possible artistic level live orchestral music to enrich, entertain, educate and challenge diverse audiences in a variety of settings.”
The Massillon Museum is more than an institution filled with art objects and historical artifacts. The museum, housed in a structure that has undergone extensive remodeling in recent years, not only “celebrates local history and artwork,” as its website promises, it also “educates members and visitors in various art forms and historically significant events, creates opportunities for exposure to social offerings and preserves the shared heritage of the Western Stark County community.”
The mission of the Canton area’s foremost dance company is tri-fold in nature. The role of Canton Ballet in the community is to train young ballet performers, encourage the many talented dancers to perform in front of audiences and to inform members of the public about dancing through a variety of educational and entertaining outreach programs. In that, it has achieved commendable success.
For nearly 50 years, ArtsinStark has championed creativity in Stark County. The private nonprofit is on an ongoing mission to “create smarter kids, new jobs and healthier communities,” said President and CEO Robb Hankins.