Operatic society in good voice 85 years on

For 85 years Norfolk and Norwich Operatic Society has entertained audiences with its lively musical productions. As it prepares for its run of Fiddler on the Roof, Abigail Saltmarsh looks back at its history.

It was December 1925 and Norfolk and Norwich Operatic Society was about to perform Dorothy, its first ever operetta. Today, 85 years on, the success of that first show is still discussed and the society is still in good voice as it prepares for Fiddler on the Roof this month.

Chairman David Pulling said: 'In the early days decisions were taken that we still adhere to today. These were to perform with a professional director and musicians, and to use professional sets and costumes. Today we still maintain the same standards and still discuss putting on the same kinds of show.

'A decision was also taken back then to make donations to charity – and we also still do that today.'

He added: 'Between 1925 and about 1970, the society mostly performed popular Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. It was not until the '60s, with Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, such as Oklahoma! and then shows like Jesus Christ Superstar that they started doing productions other than operettas.'

Fiddler on the Roof is at Norwich Theatre Royal from Monday, January 24 to Saturday, January 29. For more details or to book tickets telephone 01603 630000 or visit the website at www.theatreroyalnorwich.co.uk

To find out how the operatic society has been making sweet music for 85 years and for more pictures see EDP Sunday in this Saturday's bumper EDP.

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