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Heysham Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society (HAODS)

The Society was founded in 1928 and in the early 1960s , and possibly before, it staged a winter production at the Winter Gardens in Morecambe. There was an equivalent society in Morecambe, founded in 1903 and still running..
From another local website we  rea

Heysham Operatic Society was founded in 1965, as Heysham Parish Choral Society, to perform The Mikado as part of the year long celebrations for the millennium of St Peters Church, Heysham (1967). This proved so successful that it was decided to keep going and perform a Gilbert and Sullivan opera every year, which we have done for the past 43 years to 2008.

Is this the previous Heysham Society under another name?  Since 2008 it has branched out into other than G&S operas.

Katherine Gregson (then Katherine Bolton) who was active in the  HAODS has preserved some programmes of the productions at the Winter Gardens.The first is from 1960, though the actual year does not appear anywhere in it. It is for the operetta Naughty Marietta, Victor Herbert’s most successful musical which received its first performance on Broadway in 1910.  Perhaps not well known in these days but it features the more well known ‘Ah, sweet mystery of Life at last I’ve found thee.’  On this YouTube recording it is sung by Nelson Eddy and Jeanette McDonald.. The operetta is set in New Orleans in the late 18th centuary. Marietta is in fact a wealthy French princess on the run from an imminent arranged marriage. She has exchanged identities with her maid Marietta. 
More recently HHA  have been presented with some programmes and press cuttings from the 1930s to do with the Society and one day items from this collection may appear on this page.


The photographs in the programmes are of newsprint type and some taken by frontal flash. Enhancing them for reproduction here was not easy. though no doubt could be improved.

The following five photographs are from the Naughty Marietta  programme:

Captainlr MariettaLR

In 1961 and 1962 the HAODS presented two  Frank Loesser musicals, the well known   Guys and Dolls  (Broadway premier in 1950) and the less known The Most Happy Fella  (Broadway premier 1956).

The six pictures below from the programme of Guys and Dolls, which is based on two Damon Runyan short stories, Blood Pressure and The Idyll of Miss Sarah Brown. The latter is the tale of an unlikely  match between an inveterate gambler Sky Masterson and a missionary girl Sarah Brownn


Finally these pictures are from   The Most Happy Fella programme. The story is based on a play  They Knew What They Wanted  by Sidney Howard,about a romance between an older man and younger woman.