Kent D. Stuckey was cast as the romantic lead in a Players Theatre production of the musical Sweeney Todd back in 1984.

Kent D. Stuckey was cast as the romantic lead in a Players Theatre production of the musical Sweeney Todd back in 1984.

"I happen to love that show," the founder and president of the Northland Performing Arts Center said last week.

That pleasant experience 35 years ago resulted much more recently in a partnership being forged between the nonprofit NPAC and Imagine Productions of Columbus, a relatively young theatrical company that had been staging musicals at the Wall Street Nightclub downtown.

Stuckey said he and his wife attended an Imagine Productions performance of Thoroughly Modern Millie, at the end of which auditions were announced for the troupe's next offering, Sweeney Todd.

Stuckey tried out and was cast in the role of Judge Turpin. When the normal rehearsal space was unavailable, he offered the Northland Performing Arts Center, located in Northland Village on Tamarack Boulevard.

"They loved the facility, and a conversation ensued where we realized that they were growing, they were thriving and needed to find a new venue," Stuckey said. "Our goal is to bring more performing arts to the venue, particularly high-quality performing arts. It was just a great fit."

"We're kind of looking to expand and get the community more involved in what we do," Imagine Productions President and board Chairman Todd Holland-Falcone said. "I think a lot of people in this day and age aren't knowledgeable about or into performance art. We want to let everybody see what we do and know, "Hey, musical theater is fun."

"It's all about community and getting people involved."

Imagine Productions will share NPAC with the existing resident theatrical group, Vaud-Villities.

"There is potential to collaborate," Stuckey said. "It's a little soon to say how and when, but the organizations are looking at that."

"We really haven't had the opportunity to work with Vaud-Villities, but we're completely open to putting our heads together and maybe doing some numbers or even doing some shows together," Holland-Falcone said.

"Certainly there is potential mutual upside if this increases attendance at productions," Stuckey said. "We believe the Northland community is going to be thrilled to have a quality resident theater company and enjoy the offerings."

Imagine Productions came into existence in June 2011, formed from the ashes of a theatrical troupe that disbanded even as members of the cast for performances of The Wedding Singer were rehearsing, according to the company's website. Nonprofit status was obtained in July that year, and The Wedding Singer was the inaugural show Aug. 14, 2011, at the Wall Street Nightclub.

The nightclub is an "intimate venue," according to Holland-Falcone, and ideal for cabaret-style productions.

"We just weren't able to do certain shows," he added. "We were looking around and luckily ran into Kent.

"We adore Wall Street. We're very grateful to them ... but it's time for us to move on and get our name and face out to a wider community base. I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason."

Imagine Productions' inaugural production at its new venue will be a cabaret show Feb. 7, Holland-Falcone said. Entitled Imagine: Chapter One, the show will feature songs from each of the troupe's previous 19 productions. It will be directed by Esther Stinson, the board's vice president.