Our History

Hamilton Operatic Society is one of the oldest musical theatre groups in New Zealand, celebrating its 100th year in 2004. It prides itself on delivering quality theatre and is recognised for its high production values locally and nationally.

Past Productions have included well-known musicals such as Evita, Les Misérables, Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story, Cats, Chicago, The Rocky Horror Show, Oliver! and most recently Hairspray – The Broadway Musical to name but a few of over 200 performed in the past.   As well as compilation and theatre restaurant shows commissioned by the Society, they perform for community functions and causes such as their Concert for Christchurch in 2011 and offer their support with their wardrobe to schools and community groups.

Past cast members are now household names and include Dame Malvina Major, the late Rob Guest, Suzanne Lee, Max Cryer and Kimbra Johnson (Kimbra). In 2012 the Society was privileged to have international sensation, Richard O’Brien, play the role of Fagin in their acclaimed season of Oliver! at Founders Theatre.

The Society provides an introduction to theatre and a training ground for many people who go on to make a career either on stage or behind the scenes. The Society has supported youth development with schools such as Hillcrest High School, Fraser High School and St Peter’s, Cambridge. In 2010 the Society had over 150 children from five different schools across the Waikato in their production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolored Dreamcoat and in 2012 over 100 children in their production of Oliver!.

The Society is made up of financial members represented by a Board of Management, which are elected annually at their Annual General Meeting.The Board of Management and officers of the Society give their time voluntarily. Hamilton Operatic Society Inc. is a registered incorporated society with not for profit status.

Hamilton Operatic Society Inc. can only operate with the continued generosity of support of the community and businesses who give so much of their time and energy keeping musical theatre alive and well in Hamilton.

Connect With Us!

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Thank you Mitre 10 MEGA Hamilton for your sponsorship towards our December Concert. We are extremely grateful.

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Lauren Hancock !!

Oh man, Carrie Hope Fletcher! 😍

Can’t wait for to see the live Production Go away Covid if only it were that easy

At our AGM last night Sonja McGirr-Garrett was awarded life membership. We are proud to be able to recognise her hard work and dedication over the years in such a meaningful way.

From Canada to Las Vegas to Broadway to HOS, Sonja has always been considered a ‘triple threat’ who lights the stage up with her singing, dancing and acting prowess. Immediately after she arrived in NZ, she was spotted as a formidable force and someone who needed to be involved in our musical theatre community, Sonja has performed in and choreographed well over 30 shows for Hamilton Operatic in the past 30 years.

Not only does she lend her creative talent to our society, Sonja also gives her whole heart. She is one of our most passionate and avid supporters, who is always present at fundraising events, getting her hands dirty behind the scenes and committing countless hours both day and night to help the society each year. Sonja has also been a crucial connection between the Society and up-and-coming youth talent, first through her own dance studio and then with her experiences choreographing local school shows with both primary and secondary students such as Southwell and Fraser High School.

One of the most valuable contributions that Sonja has made to our Society is the love and heart she has put into it. Many successful seasons have been because of the relationships and manaaki that she brings to the cast and crew. There are many members of our society and shows who would be quick to tell you that the main reason they continue to come back and perform is because of Sonja. She gives to the Society because it's what she loves to do.
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At our AGM last night Sonja McGirr-Garrett was awarded life membership. We are proud to be able to recognise her hard work and dedication over the years in such a meaningful way.

From Canada to Las Vegas to Broadway to HOS, Sonja has always been considered a ‘triple threat’ who lights the stage up with her singing, dancing and acting prowess.  Immediately after she arrived in NZ, she was spotted as a formidable force and someone who needed to be involved in our musical theatre community, Sonja has performed in and choreographed well over 30 shows for Hamilton Operatic in the past 30 years.  

Not only does she lend her creative talent to our society, Sonja also gives her whole heart.  She is one of our most passionate and avid supporters, who is always present at fundraising events, getting her hands dirty behind the scenes and committing countless hours both day and night to help the society each year.  Sonja has also been a crucial connection between the Society and up-and-coming youth talent, first through her own dance studio and then with her experiences choreographing local school shows with both primary and secondary students such as Southwell and Fraser High School.  

One of the most valuable contributions that Sonja has made to our Society is the love and heart she has put into it.  Many successful seasons have been because of the relationships and manaaki that she brings to the cast and crew.  There are many members of our society and shows who would be quick to tell you that the main reason they continue to come back and perform is because of Sonja. She gives to the Society because its what she loves to do.

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Congratulations honey, well deserved ♥️ You are such an extraordinary talent and an inspiration to us all. You just keep doing it!! I'll drink to your success! 🥂 Xx

Apart from this glorious and deserved accolade I personally award you the equally prestigious "Hmmmm - Let's See If I Can Make Arty At Least Look Like He Knows What He's Doing" Award. Well done luv, always beyond amazing xx

Amazing !! About time 😘 totally deserved ! Thank you for being you so many amazing memories “ man of steel for ever more”

Best news! You saw through my poor dance skills and made me a CAT 🐈 I’ll forever be grateful! Love ya!

Congratulations Sonja. A well deserved recognition of your hard work, dedication and support over many years.

Congratulations Sonja Kathleen McGirr-Garrett it is always a pleasure to work on shows that you are involved with. You are an inspiration. 💖

Congratulations Sonja Kathleen McGirr-Garrett! Very well deserved 🎉 I love working with you - and I am no dancer 😂❤️❤️❤️

Brilliant 👏 👏 ❤️ Congratulations beautiful. (Colleen Winton thought might like to read if you haven't already seen)

Congratulations sonja .well deserved.loads of love and blessings xxxxxxxxxx

Woohooo!!! How awesome 👏 and totally deserved!!! 🎉🥳🍾❤️

Yay Sonja !! That’s great news!! Soo well deserved!! 😍 xxxx

Congratulations so well deserved

Congratulations sonja...well deserved

Well deserved my beautiful friend 😘👏👏👏❤❤❤

Well deserved Sonja <3 <3 what a lady!

So much love you beautiful woman 😍💞💋

Yay!!! Very well deserved!! Congratulations Sonja Kathleen McGirr-Garrett... Xx

So well done. I bet Kj Gailey is smiling down on you proudly

Well done Sonja

Congratulations 🍾🎉 😘😘

Congratulations Sonja Kathleen McGirr-Garrett! well deserved my friend !

Congratulations Sonja.

Congratulations Sonja!!!

Same Sonja congratulatons

Yay Sonja!!! We love you 🥰🥰🥰

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Amazing course here in Hamilton!

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Many years ago Waikato University did a course that included lighting, design, acting and directing. There were about 30 of us who participated. Al Williamson took the lighting classes and Dr Anne Hill from the USA did the Acting. The University decided they wouldn’t continue to offer the course. Very sad / but so glad someone is doing it now.

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