A look at how it all began...
The Story of Ellesmere Operatic Society begins with the outbreak of World War Two. An Air Warden's post was set up at Ellesmere Road Methodist Chapel (demolished in the 1950s due to Blitz damage in 1941).
An intense friendship developed among the wardens and their families, which they wanted to maintain after peace was declared. The Reverend A. T. Dale saw the opportunity to develop this initiative into a community centre that would also bring the parish together. Ellesmere Community Centre was formed.
There was already in existence a youth club, which had a successful Operatic and Dramatic Group run by two sisters; Phyllis Mason and Freda Mellor (aunts to Mary Millar from "Keeping Up Appearances" and appearing on stage in "Beauty and the Beast" to name one production). At the caretaker's suggestion they set up a similar group for the community centre.
The first rehearsal of Ellesmere Community Centre's new operatic group was attended by around fifty people, along with senior members of the youth opera group. "Blossom Time" was their first production and it was put on in the community centre's small concert hall to packed audiences who sat on wooden benches or stood down the sides.
In 1948, when the Centre was taken over by the Education Committee of Sheffield, the seating capacity was reduced to 100. To make up the lost takings, fund raising concerts were produced; "A Night with Ellesmere", "Memories of Drury Lane," and "Thank You for the Music" were all concerts that eventually evolved into the popular "Show Stoppers".
In 1973 Ellesmere Operatic Society left the Ellesmere Community Centre for the Montgomery Theatre in the City Centre, where they continue to produce shows to this day.
Providing a huge variety of different shows, Ellesmere Musical Theatre Company have recreated great amateur productions such as The Addams Family, Me and My Girl a favourite classic show Oliver! and they brought Billy back to Sheffield after a 15 year absence. In 2017, Ellesmere also performed a NODA award-winning production of Betty Blue Eyes.
Become a member
Here at Ellesmere we are always open to welcoming new members in to our society. Rehearsals generally take place on Tuesday and Friday evenings, with occasional Sunday rehearsals. Whether you are interested in performing, or are more in to the backstage side of things; we want to hear from you!
Get in touch via the Contact tab, or feel free to message us on our social media pages.