President’s Report 2014

From the Devonport Choral Society’s Annual General Meeting held on Monday 20 October 2014.

Welcome to the 2014 Annual General Meeting of the Devonport Choral Society.

Firstly, I would like to thank my fellow Committee Members for their support and assistance during the year. After many, many years as Society’s Secretary, the office of President certainly has been something very special. Additionally I would like to thank those Members (of this year’s production, those in Right On Cue, Life Members and Patrons) who have offered their talents, assistance, time and support.

We have certainly had an eventful year, with many opportunities for the Society, including becoming members of the Tasmanian Theatre Council and continuing our Heads of Agreement with Devonport City Council.

When several long serving members left the Committee at our last AGM we welcomed new Committee Members Melanie Woods, Helen Rockliff and Sid Sidebottom, and welcomed back, Helen Sims.

Our main production for the year was The Wizard of Oz.  Directed by myself and Tim Cooper, The Wizard of Oz presented us with many challenges.  It was probably the most technically difficult show we have ever attempted, using multi-media, illusion and some pyrotechnics.  With a cast of 45 on stage, an orchestra of 20, as well as a massive support team backstage and in front of house, it was a huge undertaking.  While some aspects of the show did not go according to plan, we had fantastic feedback from audiences and identified some terrific up and coming new talents, including our leading lady Tenika French (as Dorothy).  Other outstanding contributions were made by Life Members & Patrons Bursary recipients Joel King (as Scarecrow) and Thomas McGee (playing Soprano & Alto Saxophones).

On the final night of the show, I had great pleasure in announcing our new Life Members, Petrina Jahnz (Musical Director of many shows & Right On Cue) and Gail Elliott (long-time and dedicated orchestra member).

After the show we farewelled Vice President Tim Cooper, who is currently working in theUnited Kingdom and welcomed back Jennifer Slater to the Committee.

The Tasmanian Community Fund granted DCS $24 000 to go towards the upgrade of our audio equipment.  Special thanks must go to John Lee-Archer, Rod Viney and Gráinne Hendrey who built on successive applications to achieve this positive outcome.  The addition of the new microphone stock to our existing supplies will certainly cut down on microphone hire costs and put us in a better position to provide top-notch sound for all our shows.

Due to the departure of another hirer, we now have use of an additional space within the Spreyton shed complex.  The lack of storage and building space has been a concern for some time, so the extra space will relieve some of those pressures in the short term and give us sufficient space to build our next set.

Jenny Slater is currently working with the Devonport Repertory Theatre Society with the view to share some of our wardrobe space at theUnitingChurch.  A new system for recording borrowed items has been initiated in the wardrobe area and Jenny and Elizabeth Viney and several helpers have made huge headway in sorting out our costumes, tidying the area and maximising the space.

Sadly former Committee Member, Production Team Member and DCS Secretary Joanne Gow passed away after several years of illness.  Many DCS members, both past and present attended her funeral.

Right On Cue has had another very busy and successful year with performances at the Empty Stocking Appeal in Launceston, Ulverstone Carols By Candlelight, Devonport Australia Day Ceremony, ANZAC Day, Karingal and Meercroft Aged Care Facilities, at the Devonport Eisteddfod and at the Deloraine Choral Festival. There are also several special events coming up including a workshop weekend with renowned conductor Brett Weymark, a ROC Choral Concert and several Christmas events. Thank you to ROC Musical Director Petrina Jahnz, Assistant MD’s John Lee-Archer and Erin Travers and ROC Committee Chair Jake Jacobson, along with the ROC Committee for their hard work and enthusiasm.

We are looking forward to an exciting coming year and have already begun with auditions for our major production for 2015, All Shook Up.  There is a new-look Production Team led by Director, Sid Sidebottom, with MD Bronwyn Darvell, Vocal Director Shayne Lowe, Choreographer Phoebe Wootton, Assistant Director/Choreographer Elizabeth Viney and Producer Rod Viney. There will be opportunities for everyone on this Committee to help out with this production and I would encourage everyone to contribute to this show in any way they can.

We have been invited by the Devonport Entertainment & Convention Centre to become part of their Subscription Season for 2015.  This will assist us with promotions in the Burnie and Launceston areas in addition to our usual modes of advertising.

Negotiations are currently underway for a possible joint venture with DCS, Devonport Repertory Theatre Society and theUnitingChurch, with a view to upgrade the facilities we use and perhaps use the church as a performance space.  This will be an ongoing project and I sincerely hope the outcome will be positive for all groups involved.

Again, my thanks to our Life Members, Patrons and members of the Committee for their ongoing support of Devonport Choral Society, and my personal thanks to Minute Secretary Melanie Woods, Treasurer Erin Travers and Secretary Gráinne Hendrey.

Maree Brodzinski
20 October 2014


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