On stage, eight people dressed in cutoffs and sleeveless shirts creep along the floor. Each holds a length of metal pipe in their hands, banging the ends against the floor in a hollow ringing rhythm. Together, the racket forms a melodic percussive line — part orchestra, part performance art. This is STOMP, the dance troupe that originated in Brighton, U.K. before its infectious beat and exuberant visuals made it a mainstream hit. It’s been on Broadway, become an IMAX movie and even inspired an anti-litter campaign in New York. Entertainment Weekly included it on its list of the 50 best plays and musicals between 1983 and 2008. But our favorite part of STOMP? The fact that one of its touring members is a NE Ohio native — and current resident. “I was born in Steubenville and live in Canton,” said Elec Simon, who tours and performs with STOMP almost half the year. During his summers off, he busies himself with sharing his passion locally — and with everyone. He leads drum circles for ArtsinStark and works with groups like Canton’s Community Arts Experience (C.A.E.) and the Reentry Bridge Network to introduce even the unlikeliest of people to the therapeutic effects of music. “It’s almost like a musical healer. The drums are a healer,” he said. “People can leave their mind behind and come and play.” Simon teaches tap classes to children at A Time to Dance Studio in North Canton. Along with partners Greg Rice and Ed Sexton, he also leads 15 kids in Listen Up!, a dance troupe. “We use buckets, tap dance, body percussion,” Simon said, laughing, “I’m kind of STOMPing all year.” Currently, Simon’s focus is on the drum circles he leads at Richfield Correctional Institute in Mansfield. (Incidentally, the Reentry Bridge Program is focused on helping ex-inmates transition to life on the outside.) The escapist qualities of music, he says, are particularly profound there: “I’d have 300 prisoners come up to me and say, ‘You set me free today.’” Simon played two years of football at the University of Akron before realizing his calling was on the stage. He tried out, and was selected, for the cast of STOMP midway through college. Though he was temporarily derailed for a few years due to an injury, Simon says there’s no place he’d rather be. “My background is percussion, tap dancer and singer,” he said. “And that’s what makes STOMP so great, because everyone comes from different walks of life.” STOMP — and Simon — will be performing at the Palace Theatre in Playhouse Square (1501 Euclid Ave., Ste. 200, Cleveland; 216-771-4444) March 18, 19 and 20. Tickets for one of the five shows are $10-$55 and can be purchased here.