The historic Empress Theatre on Main Street, Magna is kicking off its 2012 season with a silent auction, dinner, and special program at the Hilton Salt Lake City Center on Oct. 21.

Laura Bedore, host of Showtunes Saturday Night on 106.5 FM, will be the guest speaker. Guests will also be given a sneak peek at upcoming shows and be given a front row seat to a special awards ceremony for plays produced this year.

The event will kick off the theater's 6th consecutive season of actively producing plays since the 1930s. Originally opened as a burlesque theater in 1916, providing comic relief for the miners of those days, the theater sat dormant for more than 70 years until Leo Ware reopened its doors in November of 2006 with a stellar performance of "Forever Plaid."

Since its beginning, the building has been purchased, traded, renovated, threatened to be demolished, and then renovated again for its grand return in 2006.

Although the building isn't fully restored yet, the theater still produces classic shoes like "The Music Man," "Oklahoma," and "The Sound of Music" on a regular basis. It's also reportedly haunted, making it a great spot to see a show on Halloween.

Gala tickets are not available at the door, so be sure to order them online before Oct. 17. They are about $25.00 and can be purchased from

Proceeds will go into the production of bigger and better shows at the theater.

Empress Theatre Kick Off Gala, 6:30 p.m., Oct. 21 Hilton Salt Lake City Center, 255 South West Temple, SLC Click here for more info