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Valentine looks to get this pARTy started

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  • The-crowd-gathered-outside-the-Valentine-Theatre-at-last-year-s-event

    The crowd gathered outside the Valentine Theatre at last year’s event.

    <Fred Eldridge

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  • Kids-outside-the-ValentineTheatre-at-last-year-s-event
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The crowd gathered outside the Valentine Theatre at last year’s event.

Fred Eldridge Enlarge


Performer at last year’s event.


The Valentine Theatre‘s Plaza pARTy on Saturday will serve a full menu of delicious performances by 10 of Toledo’s leading arts organizations, presenting everything from ballet and Argentine tango to opera, jazz, and classical music, with some very entertaining theater added to the mix.

Performances will be from 5 to 9 p.m. on the Key Bank Outdoor Stage in the Valentine‘s Plaza, and inside in the theater’s Grand Lobby.

It‘s an opportunity for arts groups to get together, and for Toledo area people to sample a variety of art forms in one place.

The party might introduce people to other forms of the performing arts, said Jori Jex, executive director of the Valentine. Someone might be drawn to the event by the ballet, but hear a jazz performance and develop a new interest.

"Everyone comes together; it's an opportunity [for arts groups] to be in the same place at the same time, and promotes outreach and partnerships,“ Jex said. Arts organizations can give a sneak peek at their upcoming seasons, and artists have the chance to see what others are doing.

About 700 people attended last year, said Matt Lentz, the Valentine‘s director of marketing and public relations, and 500 guests stayed on for the movie that closed the event.

"The event comes together very nicely,” Jex said. “This one is a joy to work on."

There is no admission charge for the Plaza pARTy. Proceeds from the event will go to a new local Performing Arts Group Fund administered by the Toledo Community Foundation and established by the Valentine to help defray costs of renting the theater.

Food will be provided by Georgio’s and Manhattan‘s restaurants. Georgio‘s menu will include beef stroganoff, $9; chicken dijon, $8; lobster bisque soup, $5, and chocolate mousse cake, $5. Manhattan's will serve hot tenderloin and cheddar sliders, $9; caprese skewers, $5; cheesecake swirl brownies, $3.

There will be a full bar as well as wines from Heidelberg Distributing in the lobby, and Heidelberg’s truck will be outside serving a selection of beers.

Entertainment will include:

Jennifer Jarrett, community dance instructor, giving lessons in Merengue and in Argentine tango.

The Toledo Jazz Orchestra Quartet, with Ron Kischuk on trombone, Chuck Shermetaro, piano, Kevin Eikum, bass, and Roger Schupp, drums, playing selections from their upcoming performances at the Valentine, including the music of Basie, Ellington, Kenton, and Mancini


A performer inside the ValentineTheatre at last year's event.


Ballet Theatre of Toledo will offer selections from The Nutcracker and demonstrations of warm-up exercises.


Kids outside the ValentineTheatre at last year's event.


The Toledo Symphony Orchestra will be represented by the Raiti Trio, featuring Skyelar (piano), Vance (trumpet), and Tierra (violin and voice) Raiti. The three are of the Toledo Symphony School of Music.

Toledo Ballet will present Emily Clark, Amanda DelVerne, and Charlotte Thruston performing a ”Kingdom of the Shades“ pas de trois variation from the ballet La Bayadère. Madyson Starner will dance a contemporary solo titled ”The Dream that I Choreographed,” which she will take to the international ballet Youth American Grand Prix competition this year, and Sara Lewandowski will sing “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Miserables.

The Toledo Repertoire Theatre will offer excerpts from The Pirates of Penzance, to be staged Sept.12-14 and Sept. 18-21.

The Valentine cabaret players will showcase the talents of some of the performers who have appeared in its Studio A Theatre over the past few seasons. Their performance is a thank-you to Key Bank donating the Key Bank Outdoor Stage.

The Toledo Opera will present the Flower Duet from the opera, Lakme' by Leo Delibes, performed by the opera’s resident artists, soprano Madeline Harts and mezzo-soprano Laura Reaper, with accompaniment by Spencer Miller.

Toledo School for the Arts will feature numbers performed by the cast of the school‘s Fall Musical, Crazy For You, to be performed Oct.16-19.

The Masterworks Chorale will perform highlights from last season's Classics and Collage concerts, including folk songs from multiple continents and jazz favorites.

The Plaza pARTy will close with a free 9 p.m. showing of the film That Thing You Do in the theater.

Major sponsors of the Plaza pARTy are Owens Corning and The Andersons; the media sponsors are The Blade and WTVG-TV Channel 13.

Contact Sue Brickey at

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