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Grantham Operatic Society wins 'Best Musical' at NODA East Midlands Awards





A town operatic society is celebrating after winning a national award for their most recent show.

The Grantham Operatic Society (GOS) has proudly clinched the 'Best Musical' award at the NODA East Midlands - Amateur Theatre Awards for their outstanding production of "Me and My Girl".

This accolade from the National Operatic and Dramatic Association (NODA) highlights the society's talent and dedication.

The production team for ‘Me and My Girl’, from left, Adam Bishop (director), Millie Sheppard (production assistant), Heidi Clayton (choreographer) and Samantha Kerby-Hall (musical director).
The production team for ‘Me and My Girl’, from left, Adam Bishop (director), Millie Sheppard (production assistant), Heidi Clayton (choreographer) and Samantha Kerby-Hall (musical director).

Elaine Bishop, Chairman of GOS, noted that the award recognises their show as the best musical in a district covering Boston, Spalding, Sleaford, Stamford, and Grantham.

"To hear that our production of 'Me and My Girl' was the best musical our local representative saw in 2023 means so much to us. We are incredibly proud of our achievement," she remarked.

"We would just like to say an enormous thank you to everyone who was involved in 'Me and My Girl' and helped to contribute to its success.

Members of the GOS committee and production team at the East Midlands NODA awards ceremony on Sunday.
Members of the GOS committee and production team at the East Midlands NODA awards ceremony on Sunday.

"It was a truly special show, and we feel this was felt by everyone involved in the show and our fantastic audiences who came and supported us."

GOS, entertaining Grantham for over 65 years, operates on a modest budget but delivers high-quality performances.

"We sometimes feel we’re still one of Grantham’s ‘best-kept secrets,’ which we’re trying to change,” said Elaine.

Production shots from 'Me and My Girl'. Photo credit: Gemma Wade and Viki Reed
Production shots from 'Me and My Girl'. Photo credit: Gemma Wade and Viki Reed

"We hope that shouting about being the best amateur musical group in the area will encourage people to want to come and see our forthcoming productions and find out more about us."

This award follows last year's nomination for 'Crazy For You', making this year's win more rewarding.

The awards selection process involved NODA representatives evaluating each production, considering music, acting, dancing, set design, and costumes.

Production shots from 'Me and My Girl'. Photo credit: Gemma Wade and Viki Reed
Production shots from 'Me and My Girl'. Photo credit: Gemma Wade and Viki Reed

"GOS are a relatively small society in comparison to some other local groups and we do not hold auditions to join our friendly chorus – we are a true community theatre group that is welcome to all.

"There are so many fantastic societies in our district producing wonderful productions, so it is really a privilege to be recognised in this way," said Elaine.

She highlighted the collaborative spirit within GOS.

From the production team led by Sam Kerby-Hall (Musical Director), Adam Bishop (Director), and Heidi Clayton (Choreographer), to the actors, vocalists, and musicians, everyone played a vital role.

The society also prides itself on creating custom sets, costumes, and props, further enhancing their productions' uniqueness.

In addition to winning 'Best Musical', GOS received a 'Highly Commended' for their programme design for "Policeman’s Lot", marking their first nomination in this category.

This recognition reflects the hard work and creativity of their design team, particularly Ben, their poster and programme designer.

Audience feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, with social media comments praising the show as "fabulous" and "as good as going to the West End".

Such accolades from both critics and audiences reinforce the society's reputation for excellence in amateur theatre.

Looking ahead, GOS is preparing for their upcoming performances of "The Pirates of Penzance" by Gilbert and Sullivan in September and the classic Cole Porter musical "Kiss Me Kate" in April 2025.

GOS hopes this success will draw more attention to their productions and encourage greater community engagement.

The society plans to celebrate their achievements at their upcoming AGM and looks forward to sharing future performances with their supporters.



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