Burnaby's own Footlight Theatre Company has been drawing audiences for 46 years with a fun annual musical production for all ages.
And this year is no exception, says board president Rob Christensen, because the choice for this season is the classic hit, Grease, on now until Nov. 24 at the Michael J. Fox Theatre.
"It's such a popular musical, and it hadn't been produced in the Lower Mainland in the last few years, so we thought the time was right to take that one on," he said. "The movie is so special to people that when we produced the play, we made sure we captured a lot of those memorable moments from the movie."
Originally a 1971 Broadway rock 'n' roll musical, Grease was later turned into a Hollywood blockbuster in 1978, starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.
The story, written by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, is based on a group of high school "greasers" at the fictional Rydell High in 1959, whose lives revolve around fast cars, sock hops, cliques and classic rock 'n' roll.
The audience can expect to see some great dancing, have some great laughs, and, of course, hear some great music on stage, Christensen said.
Some of the sing-along numbers include Greased Lightning, Summer Nights, Hopelessly Devoted To You and Mooning.
"We're sticking true, but we have our spin and Footlight touch to it, for sure," Christensen said.
Footlight Theatre started in Burnaby in 1965, originally putting on shows at the James Cowan Theatre at Deer Lake Park - a vaudeville show and a Christmas play in association with the Burnaby Village Museum, as well as a major musical play every year.
Every season, the company holds open auditions for actors and actresses from around the Lower Mainland who want to experience the stage.
"We've always tried to provide an opportunity for up-and-coming talent and performers to get experience and move on in the theatre world," Christensen said.
For local actor Theo Marx, Footlight Theatre provided a good opportunity to practise his skills, playing "bad guy" Vince Fontaine.
"I love community theatre because I want to do stuff that people actually care about," he said. "I think TV is more focused on the whole world, whereas community theatre, it's like you're actually doing it for people that you know, people in your community, helping push the arts kind of thing, I think that's really important."
The other local performer in this year's production of Grease is Angela King, who plays a cheerleader and dance captain. This past summer she was in The Music Man with Theatre Under the Stars in Vancouver, and last year, like Marx, she was part of the cast of Footlight's Wizard of Oz.
Grease runs Fridays through Sundays until Nov. 24 at 7: 30 p.m., with some 2 p.m. matinee showings. Tickets are available online through www.ticketstonight.ca or in person at the Michael J. Fox Theatre, at 7373 Macpherson Ave., one hour before showtime.