At B.HOS our mission is to produce high quality productions that build on our history whist contributing to the community.
Established on 2nd December 1886, The Brighton & Hove Operatic Society have been a continuous presence on Brighton stages. With over 250 full productions to their name they have played in nearly all of Brightons professional theatres both past and present. BHOS have performed nearly 80 times at Brighton’s Theatre Royal and produced The Domes annual Pantomime for the best part of 40 years between 1946 and 1986.
Although the word “Operatic” no longer reflects the company we now are, it is important to retain our name so we can celebrate our long and illustrious history. To Date we have produced 48 plays, 29 Pantomimes and 168 Musicals so we are so much more than an “Operatic Society” However as the South of England’s oldest theatre company we made the decision to incorporate our traditional name with more modern branding.
BHOS also have a long history of charitable initiatives. In 1900 we donated all profits from our Theatre Royal production of HMS Pinafore to the “Widows and Orphans Mafeking Fund” The £100 donated (£12000 in todays money) so impressed the owner of The Theatre Royal he gave BHOS special hire rates at cost as a thank-you. Although we understandably stopped full productions during both World Wars we held many fundraising concerts for both civilians and soldiers. In the Dome pantomime years we held sponsored events to raise money so we could gift tickets to children who would not normally have been able to afford the price of a ticket.
Today we still have charity at the forefront of our minds as we seek to again give away tickets for a whole performance to various local charities. As a theatre company, we rely heavily on our community supporting us and we recognise the importance of giving back wherever we can. In fact it was of some surprise to us that after we launched what we thought was a new charitable initiative we discovered our past endeavours. It goes to show that charity has always been at the companies heart.
However the true purpose of BHOS is to provide opportunities for our local community to act, sing, dance and create in the many ways that theatre requires. Performance, directing, designing, making…… theatre provides a creative outlet that is extremely rewarding. We are proud that we have given our local community 130 years of opportunities to satisfy their creative ambition.