The Gilbert and Sullivan Company of El Paso is proud to perform with/and support the El Paso local talents.
The Gilbert and Sullivan Company of El Paso (G&S El Paso) is committed to producing and presenting the operettas of W. S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan, along with other collaborative works by either of these luminaries, to the general public. G&S El Paso is dedicated to enhancing the cultural climate and theater appreciation of audiences of all ages, races, traditions and socio-economic backgrounds from the El Paso, Texas, Juárez, Mexico and Las Cruces, New Mexico region.
History & Development
The Gilbert and Sullivan Company of El Paso (G&S El Paso) was founded in late 1969 by its first artistic director, Joan Quarm, and presented its first operetta, Patience, in the spring of 1970. G&S El Paso had its beginnings in the Upstairs Theater Downtown and moved to the Chamizal National Memorial Park Theater in 1980. Every summer for over a quarter of a century, the company presented a major production at the Chamizal.
For part of the 2006 season and all the 2007-2010 seasons, the company staged its shows at the historic Scottish Rite Theater in downtown El Paso. In 2011, the company returned to the Chamizal Theater, which has graciously supported our performances at very little cost. The Las Cruces, New Mexico area has also adopted our group and its style of Gilbert and Sullivan performances. Since 2004 we have performed our summer shows at the Black Box Theatre, located in the downtown mall, for very appreciative audiences.
For over forty-four years, The Gilbert and Sullivan Company of El Paso has presented the fruits of the collaboration of W. S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan. These operettas continue to entertain audiences since their original performances over 125 years ago.
This year the company is proud to be celebrating its 45th Anniversary Season. Many of our Board members and performers have been with the company for over 20 years and we even have parents and their grown children performing. Our performers come from all walks of life—we have college professors and staff, elementary and high school teachers, medical professionals, financial professionals, federal and municipal government employees, salespeople and students.
G&S El Paso provides a training ground for actors and singers of all ages and skill levels. For many, it is the first time they have ever been on a stage. They go on to use the skills learned with G&S El Paso to perform with other theater groups such as El Paso Playhouse, Shakespeare on the Rocks, Kids-N-Co. and various University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) theaters.
For many years the company has performed a smaller–scale production in addition to the main project. This allows newer company members to have the spotlight in a smaller production.
G&S El Paso maintains high artistic standards in programming and services. We display the talents of local singers in lead roles and the chorus includes alternate leads in each double-cast production. G&S El Paso utilizes accomplished musicians for the orchestra—providing an opportunity for community instrumentalists to meet and play in new settings. We also train performers for other theatrical endeavors—many go on to other companies and enjoy great acclaim.
Everyone sings in the chorus, which in Gilbert and Sullivan operettas is almost as important a role as any lead. Most of the lead roles are double cast so that there is not a problem should someone not be able to perform.