On 17th February 1892 at a meeting in the High Street, Worcester, the Worcester Operatic & Dramatic Society was founded. The first production, HMS Pinafore, was presented at the Public Hall in Worcester to capacity houses. The second production, Patience, was moved to the Theatre Royal in Angel Street. A surplus of £60 was donated to the Royal Infirmary.
At the Annual General meeting at the Star Hotel in 1893, the membership subscription was fixed at one guinea (£1.05) per year, to include six free seats! Since these inaugural days, a considerable sum has been donated to many local charities.
Recent decades have seen many changes in the work of the Society, moving on to more ambitious productions, including most of the modern full scale musicals. In 1954 we lost the Theatre Royal due to redevelopment, but happily moved to the Festival Theatre Malvern, where we performed our Autumn shows for many years.
A Worcester Society
Conscious of being a Worcester Society, we consider ourselves fortunate in having the Swan Theatre in Worcester, where, since 1966 we started staging our Spring shows. The theatre is now run by Worcester Live and since 2007 has become our main venue for our bi-yearly large scale musical productions.
In 1981 with the support of members and friends, the society purchased its own home at St Mary’s Hall, Northfield Street, Worcester, where we rehearse and stage our smaller productions.
WODS consistently produce great quality amateur theatre productions with a strong emphasis on Musicals. We stage 2 large scale productions a year at The Swan Theatre Worcester as well as smaller productions that are performed in our own rehearsal space.
We rehearse on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. Tuesday is usually for Principal members of cast and Wednesday is our main rehearsal night. Wednesday is for all cast members, as well as any non-cast members of the society who wish to pop down to watch and socialise. All rehearsals are held at our own rehearsal space in the centre of Worcester.
If you’re interested in joining us, you can get more information or arrange a visit by using our contact form.