The Arts Club was originally a loose collection of like-minded artists running a converted downtown gospel hall in the 1960s and '70s. Director Bill Millerd deftly moved it to touristy Granville Island in 1979 and then boosted prestige further with the conversion of the beautiful 1930s vintage Stanley Theatre in 1998. Today the Arts Club is Vancouver's unrivalled theatre machine. However, quality is still erratic, lurching from exquisitely designed and acted showpieces to under-rehearsed clunkers. One writer to look out for is Morris Panych (7 Stories, Vigil). The ten to 12 shows each year range from Disney's Beauty and the Beast to The Glass Menagerie to a regional hit like David Lindsay-Abaire's The Rabbit Hole. The Stage boasts the Arts Club Backstage Lounge, one of the city's best waterfront outdoor patios, featuring a solid lineup of live music in the evenings, beer specials and pub food.