Borders tunes up for annual feast of musical theatre

Calamity Jane, Kelso opera, 18 March 2010
Calamity Jane, Kelso opera, 18 March 2010

FROM amusement rides to one of Her Majesty’s ships, the Borders’ operatic societies are taking on a variety of popular shows during the coming season.

Many of the group’s have been in existence for around 100 years but retain their popularity in the local community, enjoying performances in front of sold-out town halls.

And first to hit the boards will be Selkirk, who present Carousel in the Victoria Halls from February 28, while last on the bill is Melrose and their version of HMS Pinafore.

Opera season schedule

Selkirk Amateur Operatic Society – Carousel

Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical centres on carousel worker Billy Bigelow and his romance with millworker Julie Jordan. A complex tale of relationships, marital violence, regret and reconciliation when it goes wrong – not your average musical comedy.

Producer: Karen McKenna; Musical director: Nancy Muir; Choreographer: Michelle Douglas. Venue: Victoria Halls, February 28 to March 3, 7.30pm (Saturday matinee 2pm).

Tickets: phone 01750 21719/

Galashiels Amateur Operatic Society – Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

Set in the Oregon wilderness in the 1850s, preacher Adam Pontipee’s quick fire marriage to Milly leads the waitress to meet his six unruly brothers, who she attempts to turn into gentlemen.

Producer/Musical director: Jeff Thomson; Choreographer: Marie McCulloch

Venue: Volunteer Hall, March 5 to 10, 7.30pm.

Tickets: 07754 588 688/

Hawick Amateur Operatic Society – 42nd Street

By Michael Stewart and Mark Bramble, this show within a show sees ailing Broadway director Julian Marsh return to produce one final show, but his leading lady Dorothy Brock is injured and must be replaced by novice Peggy Sawyer.

Producer: Brian McGlasson; Musical director: Derek Calder; Choreographer: Anne Anderson.

Venue: Hawick Town Hall, March 12 to 17, 7.30pm (Saturday matinee 2.15pm).

Tickets: 01450 377031/377905/

Kelso Amateur Operatic Society – Fiddler on the Roof

Set in Tsarist Russia in the early 20th century, the story focuses on Tevye, the father of five daughters, and his attempts to maintain his family and Jewish religious traditions from outside influences.

Venue: Tait Hall, March 20 to 24, 7.30pm (Saturday matinee 2.30pm).

Tickets: email Hector Innes photography shop

The Innerleithen and District Amateur Operatic Society – Sound of Music

Rodgers and Hammerstein’s tale of a woman who leaves an Austrian convent to become a governess to the children of a Naval officer widower.

Producer: Brian McGlasson; Musical director: Derek Calder; Choreographer: Anne Anderson.

Venue: Memorial Hall, March 26 to 31, 7.30pm (Saturday matinee 2.30pm).

Tickets: 0845 224 1908/

Melrose Amateur Operatic Society – HMS Pinafore

Gilbert and Sullivan’s humorous story about the HMS Pinafore’s captain’s daughter and her relationship with a lower class sailor.

Producer: Colin Smith; Musical director: James Young; Rehearsal accompanist: Alison Kaye.

Venue: Corn Exchange, March 26 to 31, 7.30pm.

Tickets: 01835 822425/