Married couple Jenness Klein and Julian Schrenzel return to the Springer Opera House stage for "9 to 5: The Musical," which opens tonight.
The couple met and fell in love when rehearsing the Springer's production of "Guys and Dolls" in 2006.
Schrenzel jokingly wonders if his wife would have fallen in love with him if they'd met during this production where Schrenzel plays an evil, sexist boss.
His character, Franklin Hart, the CEO of Consolidated, belittles and harasses the women who work at his company.
Springer Opera House artistic director Paul Pierce said the play has a great story, is very smart and has beautiful music written by Dolly Parton, who starred in the 1980 movie of the same name.
The play is "quite endearing and universal," he said. Back when the movie came out, words like "glass ceiling," "work-life balance" and "personal computer" were new. Now, they are part of modern day lexicon.
Though it's 32 years later, women still face inappropriate workplace behavior, promotion issues and balancing work and life.
"In a sense, we've come so far since then," Pierce said. "But out of 500 Fortune 500 companies, only 15 have female CEOs."
Christy Baggett plays Violet, a supervisor who decides to do something to stop the gender discrimination that keeps her from getting promotions that she deserves.
"She takes her job seriously," Baggett said. "But she's frustrated with the old boys' club."
Enter Judy, played by Klein, a housewife who is entering the work force for the first time.
"She's a pretty lonely lady," Klein said. "Her husband just left her for a 17-year-old girl and she's having many evenings home alone, probably watching old movies and Jeopardy."
During the course of the play, Judy discovers she doesn't need a husband or a man to take care of her.
Then there's Doralee, played by Katie Deal, daughter of Gov. Nathan Deal. Doralee was played by Parton in the movie. The other women in the company don't like her at first because they mistakenly think she's sleeping with the boss.
"She's eager for female companionship," Deal said of her character. "She has no girl friends. The other women don't accept her as she is and she's hurt by the women who treat her as trash."
Though these three women don't get along at first, they join forces by middle of the first act when they decide to conspire against their boss.
Pierce said Hart is a villain who doesn't know he's a villain.
"He's a stand-up guy -- in his mind," Schrenzel said. "He does not expect what happens."
This musical just became available for community theaters this year and Pierce jumped at the chance to let local audiences see it.
He went to UPTA (the Unified Professional Theater Auditions) in Memphis last year and saw about 2,000 actors for various Springer shows. He saw about 800 actors at SETC (the Southeastern Theater Conference) and about 200 at the Springer's own season auditions.
Out of those auditions, he found the cast of "9 to 5."
"It's a heck of a cast," he said.