Intergalactic legions set aside light sabers, and Cone Heads mingled with an Alien and a Wookie, for a dazzling night of dining and dance-themed as “2018 A Space Odyssey.” Partners of Playhouse Square transported the KeyBank State Theatre and Connor Palace out of this world and into a contemporary Mos Eisely Cantina for the 2018 Jump Back Ball.
An earth-centric VIP dinner by Driftwood, serving goat-cheese tart, braised short ribs and orange panna cotta with fig syrup, led to a high-tech concert by the Tesla Orchestra in the Connor Palace. From the second tier of the theater, four mini-coils of copper pipe shot bolts of plasma, modulated to generate musical notes for renditions of the “Star Wars” theme and other astral tunes.
Then the stage was cleared for the laser-lit music of Faction. The general party grew to about 850 patrons, strolling the dinner buffet for crab-crusted bronzino, Swedish meatballs in brandy, and chocolate cake served in mini-jars, and all balanced on lap-sized gold-hued disposable trays. A sci-fi scavenger hunt, casino games, a prize wheel, raffle and silent auction offered venues to offset the caloric gravity pull and support the Partners’ not-for-profit mission for community engagement and education programs.
Notable endeavors include the Disney Musicals in Schools to bring theater to financially disadvantaged elementary students, Sensory Friendly Performance for those impacted by autism spectrum disorders and others challenged by traditional staging, and the Dazzle Awards, which honors excellence in high school musical theater in Northeast Ohio. STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHS BY PEGGY TURBETT