ABOUT THE SOCIETY
In 1937, a number of enthusiasts met and decided to form what became known as The Holy Trinity Operatic and Dramatic Society, chaired by the Rev’d L. J. B. Snell, father of Col. Blashford Snell, the famous explorer. The first production was “Merrie England” , staged in the Holy Trinity Institute in October of that year. the following year, the Society produced ” The Gondoliers” with a cast of 50. Rehearsals for “Iolanthe” commenced in 1939 but were abandoned after the outbreak of WW2.
The group reformed in 1947 as the Hereford Gilbert and Sullivan Operatic Society, rehearsing for “The Gondoliers” which was presented from April 27th to May 1st, 1948 at the Garrison Theatre, Bradbury Lines under the baton of Arthur Cole, then Director of Music to the Cheltenham Corporation.
The Society has since performed all the well-known Gilbert and Sullivan operettas and other productions have included “The Arcadians”, “Bless the Bride”, “Brigadoon”, “The Gypsy Baron”, “La Belle Helene”, etc. Producers in the early years included several ex-members of the D’Oyly Carte Opera Company including notably, Leslie Rands, Beryl Dixon and Thomas Round and the tradition of inviting professional and high quality producers continues to the present day, Martyn Harrison and Alistair Donkin being the most recent to take on that role.
From 1949 to 1962 the Society’s shows were staged at The Kemble Theatre, Broad Street and after its demolition, at the Regal theatre (now a bingo hall), the Garrison theatre and Belmont Abbey school. In 1979 the Society staged its first production at The Nell Gwynne Theatre, later renamed The New Hereford Theatre and later still redeveloped as The Courtyard
The Hereford G&S Society has formed strong links with Hereford’s twin town of Dillenburg, Germany and has hosted members of the Glück-Auf Choir here in Hereford as well as visiting Dillenburg on several occasions to perform shows.
The Society celebrated 75 years of bringing G&S to the people of Hereford and the Welsh Marches in 2022.
Hannah Roper – L.R.S.M, M.A. (Cantab)
Hannah briefly attended the Yehudi Menuhin school, and studied with renowned British violinist Rodney Friend, Mateja Marinkovic, based at the Royal Academy of Music in London, and British concertmaster, James Clark.
Hannah was for three consecutive years was the recipient of the prestigious Martin Musical Scholarship of the Philharmonia Orchestra and received the the inaugural Yehudi Menuhin Prize for string playing whilst reading music at the University of Cambridge.
She enjoys a varied solo career with a particular focus on English music, and performs regularly with various chamber ensembles and as a freelance orchestral musician in major venues in the UK and further afield, including Carnegie Hall, New York.
For more information on Hannah’s work, click here.
Colin Hales – MMus, BMus (Hons), LRSM
Colin Hales, the founder of Hereford Fanfare Trumpets, spent over 25 years as a military musician, the last 15 as as Bandmaster. He has composed, conducted and performed fanfares in virtually any scenario imaginable, even on horseback!
Some of Colin’s compositions have been very formal, others mixed his depth of skills and passion as a composer and arranger with his knowledge of modern pop music to provide a bespoke musical extravaganza.
For more information on Colin’s work, click here.