Memories of the

Toronto Light Opera Association

1942 - 1955

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The Toronto Light Opera Association was created by Fred Mawson, with the help of his son Howard, sometime before its first production, Trial by Jury, a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, in 1942. The Association staged productions with Fred Mawson as music director in various locations around Toronto until it was disbanded in 1955. For some of the productions, Alfred Kidney acted as stage director.

Below are some documents and photos from the productions.

Trial by Jury

This short operetta was the group's first production, first in May and then again in October. although they were not yet billing themselves as the "Toronto Light Opera Association".
H.M.S. Pinafore
This was the group's first full-length operetta, and was presented in March and November, 1943.
Because many of the men in the group were away fighting in WWII, no productions were staged in 1944, although the remaining members continued to rehearse.

H.M.S. Pinafore

 This May, 1945 production, held at Northern Vocational School, benefitted from the inclusion of a number of experienced Toronto players, including Geoffrey Hatton of D'Oyly Carte Company experience.
The Pirates of Penzance
 This production was held in March, at Danforth Technical School.

Here is a program from the production of Patience, held in March, 1947 at the Central School of Commerce auditorium.

The Mikado
Here is a cast photo of the Association's production of The Mikado in 1947, held December, 1947.
The Pirates of Penzance


This production of The Pirates of Penzance was held in April at the Northern Vocational School auditorium.


 The production of Iolanthe was held in November at the Ukranian Temple Theatre.

 This is a cast photo from about 1948. Because the photo is undated, and there are no costumes, I'm not sure which production the cast was working on when the picture was taken.


Trial by Jury/H.M.S. Pinafore
Here is a copy of the program for Trial by Jury and H.M.S. Pinafore, which were performed together as one production in May of 1949, at Danforth Technical School auditorium. It contains a history of the Toronto Light Opera Association to that date.

Yeomen of the Guard

Here is a copy of the program for the November, 1949 production of Yeomen of the Guard, held at Bloor Collegiate Institute auditorium. It contains a history of the Toronto Light Opera Association to that date.
The Gondoliers
 This production took place in November at Bloor Collegiate.
Members of the Toronto Light Opera Association taking part in Music Day at the Canadian National Exhibition, August, 1948
 Were there more productions after 1950?
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