Dear Friends and Members,

It is the Society’s custom that the Chairman send out a letter in August in order to keep members up-to-date with ongoing events and developments and to call everyone to the Annual General Meeting.

This year’s Annual General Meeting will take place at St Mark’s Church Hall at 8pm on Monday 11 September. All members should attend as it will be an opportunity to elect a new Committee and to air any issues that need to be raised.  Members wishing to raise points should submit them in writing to the Secretary at least 7 days prior to the Meeting so that the Committee can prepare measured replies. Please, please consider volunteering to serve as an Officer or as a Member of the Committee, your help, support and assistance is needed.   If we don’t have enough people, those who do service have to work hard, which ought not to happen.   Nominations can be made at the AGM, but it is better to send them to us beforehand.  Please make sure that anyone you nominate agree to be nominated!

This year will be a rather special year as Joy Reeve (our wonderful pianist) will be presented with her 50 year NODA AWARD by Ian Cox our Regional Councillor for NODA West Midlands.  Drinks, nibbles and possibly a little bit more, will be provided to help celebrate this wonderful occasion! There will also be a number of photographs available of past productions. (All the archive is being put onto disc)  Who knows your mother, father, sister, cousin or aunt may well be in the photographs!!

On the subject of NODA AWARDS, we were nominated for the Best Deluxe Programme for our production of Carmen.  We won!!!

Our sincere thanks to all involved in the production of the programme and particularly to Patricia Head for co-ordinating the mammoth task. Thanks also to Paul Thompson for going to Stourbridge on our behalf and receiving the award. (not only a framed certificate but also a cup.)

Last year’s ‘Victorian Fayre Carol Sing’ at Greyfriars was a great success and enjoyed by all who took part. We have been booked to sing once again for Saturday December 2nd this year. We hope you can join us.

For the first time we were invited to sing for the St. Richard’s Hospice Annual Carol Concert with Worcester Concert Brass. This was a wonderful successful evening, so much so, we have been asked back to entertain once more on Friday 1st December 2017. We will be singing not only Christmas music but some of our summer concert repertoire. Rehearsals are on Monday 23 and 30 October. Do come and join us.

Although neither of these ventures offer no financial gain for the Society they continue to raise the profile and be an opportunity for some excellent PR for both the Society and The Marriage of Figaro.

We also opened the Claines Music Festival in September, this was greatly appreciated and good publicity for The Magic Flute.

Our annual production this year was a semi staged version of The Magic Flute. This was greeted with great enthusiasm by both the cast and audiences. Thanks, once again for this successful suggestion, must go to Andrew Rawle (Director) and with the wonderful support too of Musical Director Sue Black. They are a great team that we are very fortunate to have them both on board. This genre of music really shows off the great talent we have in the society, although for the first time in years we brought in a professional singer to sing the part of Tamino.  This proved to be a great success and we also attracted new audiences. This can only be good news for GWOS/Opera Worcester.

It was later agreed and announced  that our production for 2018 will be Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro again under the leadership of Andrew and Sue. They have worked hard looking at the score and allowing for extra chorus work as SATB. These are exciting times ahead.

Regarding the Summer Concert, this year the Committee decided to follow the successful format we had last year and give just one afternoon concert at St. George’s Church, Barbourne, but with an Afternoon Tea. It was suggested that the music be that of Noel Coward, Cole Porter and George Gershwin. The afternoon was called The Music of Noel, Cole and Friends with Afternoon Tea. This might I say was a storming success, once again far exceeding expectations. Can I express my thanks not only to Sue and Andrew, but to Catherine Warren and her team of helpers as they provided the afternoon tea. It was such a lot of hard work but the reward was great. For once, we made a profit and all the money went to the Society.

Another exciting venture the committee undertook last year and have again this, is that we have secured a place in Worcester Cathedral to partake of the Annual Christmas Tree Festival. This will be a wonderful opportunity to promote the society and in particular The Marriage of Figaro, to a very, very wide audience.

A huge decision was made this year that being to change the name of the Society from Great Witley Operatic Society  to ‘OPERA WORCESTER’  as was said at the EGM on 19 June , a lot of soul searching and time was spent by the committee before we came to this decision. I speak on behalf of the committee and wish Opera Worcester well in all it does and strives to do.

I am delighted to be able to inform you that Andrew and Sue have worked hard, so much so, that I am able to send you the Audition pieces. Please find them with this newsletter as a separate attachment.

Auditions will be held at Perdiswell Young Peoples Leisure Centre, Droitwich Road, Worcester on Sunday October 1st. We will be using the Dent edition of The Marriage of Figaro. Vocal Scores will be available at the first rehearsal (4 Sept).

I am also sending you as an attachment, the Application Form should you wish to audition.

Rehearsals for The Marriage of Figaro will start at St Mark’s at 7.30pm on Monday 4 September. Please tell your friends.

Can I take this opportunity to thank the Committee for all their hard work, commitment and vision.  I hope to see you all at the AGM.  It is then that a new Committee will be installed.

I want to also thank YOU all for your hard work and commitment over the past year. Without you there is no Society. It is YOUR Society and for it to remain so it is vital to have your continued support and input.





Mrs. Monica Martin