The cast of The Pajama Games will hit the stage starting Thursday.

The cast of The Pajama Games will hit the stage starting Thursday.

More than just a theatre

It’s one of special aspects of Nelson that sets it apart from other tiny burgs across Canada.

It’s one of special aspects of this community that sets it apart from other tiny burgs across Canada. The Capitol Theatre is a live performance venue with a historic past, a vital present and a shiny future.

On Thursday night the curtain will open on the 2012 summer youth production. On today’s front page you can read about two of the young directors who will bring The Pajama Game alive. The story is a perfect example of why the Capitol means so much to the Nelson area.

The history of the Capitol Theatre is a well known tale. It opened in 1927 and was an important part of the local cultural scene until 1960. It came alive with music, stage and movies during a time when entertainment options like the iPods, Internet and video games were stuff of science fiction.

Then it was shuttered. Times were changing and the venue became less important to daily life in an evolving community. It was regrettable and it was missed dearly. In 1983 a group of visionaries came along to form the Capitol Theatre Restoration Society. Through much toil, the theatre was reopened in 1988. Since that time it has become an iconic symbol of what the arts mean to Nelson.

Today the Capitol hosts top-end talent in music, dance and theatre. It provides locals the opportunity to see performances that are typically oversized for a town of our population. It also gives the impressive depth of local talent a stage to share their gifts with the rest of us.

Twice a year, the Capitol creates the real magic of a small venue in a small city. The summer youth production and the Christmas pantomime bring together stage veterans and performance rookies in flesh-raising runs that  never fail to impress. It puts the community in theatre and makes us all proud.

Whether you know the songs or the plotline of The Pajama Game, it’s not to be missed. Until you have sat in the audience during a muggy July evening at the Capitol as young people bring life to the downtown, you have not really experienced a truly amazing aspect of Nelson.