The Boorowa Musical and Dramatic Society, usually known as “the M&D”, will celebrate its 60th anniversary in October. Members former and present and supporters will gather to reminisce and renew acquaintance.
Shortly after the Society’s formation, then known as the Boorowa Revue Company, on May 27 in 1958, its first production Canemumbola Capers – “a feast of music, melody and mirth” – was staged in the Empire Theatre, otherwise known as the Guild Hall. All proceeds of the production went to the Boorowa District Hospital.
The programme was produced by the late Bert Lawler, and, yes, the musical direction was in the hands of Mary Corcoran, who still presides at the piano for today’s choral performances.
Variety was the theme for the production, with an opening chorus, a selection from musical comedy; a ventriloquist (the late Rex Gorham); Old Moore’s Almanac, a farce in one act; Antonio, an operatic tragedy spoof; The Smallest Man in the World (Bert and Margaret Lawler); a selection of tunes from the “naughty 90s”; First Meeting, a dumb show (Barry Rex); Mr Fothergill Joins the Angels, another farce in one act; A Domestic Melodrama; and finally a performance by the whole company of Selections From Oklahoma. The evening concluded with the singing of God Save the Queen.
In the days before television and the internet, the production drew a capacity audience. The production was the first of many more over the years, some of which were major undertakings, such as performances of The King and I, South Pacific and Oklahoma.
Today, with the ageing of members and dwindling numbers, the society is concentrating on choral activities, entertaining at Boorowa functions, the hostel and hospital, and retirement facilities at Harden and Yass. Two members of the original 1958 cast, Mary Corcoran and myself, are still involved.
The M&D is planning a reunion luncheon for Saturday, October 27 at the Boorowa Ex-Services Club, which members, former members and interested members of the community are invited to attend. Generous sponsorship for this significant occasion has been provided by the Bendigo Community Bank.
Anyone who has had any connection with the M&D over the years will be welcome, whether they were performers, members of the backstage team or only formed part of the audience.
It is hoped that as many people as possible will take the opportunity to attend to enjoy the socialising and reminiscing which will be sure to take place.
Bookings will be at the Boorowa Ex-Services Club and Carmody’s Newsagency, and will open on October 1. Direct debit information will be provided for those who are unable to book in person.
The organising committee needs as much information as possible in regard to the contact details of former members and anyone who can assist is asked to email or phone:
- Derrick, firstname.lastname@example.org, 6385 3213;
- Lorna, email@example.com, 6385 3736.