APPARENTLY music and passion were always in fashion at the Selkirk Musical Theatre Company.

And next week they aim to help the town fall back in love with musicals.

The highly-talented cast are putting the final touches to the Barry Manilow stage show, Copacabana.

With audiences down in recent years, the Selkirk singers, actors, musicians and dancers hope Copacabana will be a watershed moment in the musical company's fortunes.

Robin Murray from Selkirk Musical Theatre Company told us: "Over the last couple of years we have suffered a drop in our audience numbers.

"Last year's show Thoroughly Modern Millie, which many people told us was one of our best ever, played to half empty halls on many nights and ticket sales were below 50 per cent - and the year before was not much better.

"It does not take a mathematician to work out that losses like that can not be sustained for much longer.

"Having already lost Melrose Opera Company it would be a body blow to the Borders for another company to draw the final curtain."

Since 1927 when The Mikado was performed to an excited audience, Selkirk has been treated each spring, apart from the war years, to some of the most recognisable and enjoyable stage shows by its local performers.

Originally called Selkirk Operatic Company, the group has performed everything from Gilbert and Sullivan classics to West End blockbusters such as South Pacific, West Side Story and the Sound of Music.

In its heyday the Victoria Hall would be packed out with enthusiastic patrons.

From next Tuesday (February 27) through to the Saturday, it is hoped the Victoria Hall will once again be standing room only as the stage is turned into Manhattan's Copacabana club.

Expect plenty of dancing and singing as Lola and Tony take their first steps towards fame in post-war America - as well as yellow feathers in her hair and a dress cut down to there,

Tickets are available from the Selkirk Musical Theatre's pop-up shop at 71 High Street each day from 10am to 2pm.

Each evening's performance starts at 7.30pm with a matinee being staged on the Saturday afternoon from 2pm.