Ararat Musical Comedy Society will take on iconic musical Les Miserables at the Ararat Town Hall from June 15-30.
Ararat's Russell Purdie will play the part of Javert, in the production set in early 19th-century, France.
Javert is a police inspector relentlessly tracking down a French peasant Jean Valjean who broke parole to start a new life.
"When you get involved with any theatre of any sort there are certain roles which are iconic which you would love to play and fit within your capabilities," Mr Purdie said of his role of Javert.
"I have always enjoyed playing darker, slightly sinister at various points.
"I'm not saying Javert is a sinister character - he's just a cop, a bloke out trying to do his job.
"He's represented often as a sinister force within the movie or in the show - he's not, but that's up for people to decide themselves."
Mr Purdie started in theatre during his high school years.
"I played some sport but liked productions and theatre - it was something different," he said.
"I was always singing around the house and when I finished high school and got a job I bought myself a guitar and taught myself to play.
"From there I did some acoustic shows and moved back into productions when I was living in Shepparton in 2011."
Mr Purdie joined Ararat Musical Comedy Society in 2017 when he moved to Ararat and was involved with their production Curtains.
"Just when I was thinking I wasn't going to be involved this year - when I heard it was Les Miserables, how could I not," he said.
"I started to do some renovations in our house in April 2018 and I thought that would take up most of my time.
"Unfortunately I had a double bypass in November and that put me on bed rest for about three months.
"I found out the week before I fell ill, I was cast as the part of Javert so I got to know the character really well while I was in the hospital.
"I used it as a means to pull myself through the operation and recovery - by seeing the positive outcome out the other side."
Mr Purdie said he used the time to focus on the production and take his mind off what could have been a stressful and worrying time.
"I have had a history of anxiety and depression. It was something I could of quite easily fallen back into," he said.
"I just didn't have the time and because I had this show that became so important to me to do, and do it well, it helped me through that time.
"From mental health and physical health perspective, being involved and able to talk about stuff and have support around you is always a positive."
Mr Purdie said personally for himself, along with everyone else, all have their reasons to be excited after the first show.
"That's where I love theatre. It's the moment when you finally put it out there in front of people and go 'you know what we have a bloody good show, sit back and enjoy the ride guys'," he said.
Tickets for the event can be purchased via the website www.araratmusicalcomedysociety.com.
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