To become a performing member of OXOPS, you will need to audition. Don’t worry, this isn’t meant to be scary and we aren’t looking for polished performers! We are looking to grow our membership with people from all walks of society that are happy to get stuck-in and join our community. We always aim to create a friendly and supportive environment at our auditions.
Interested in backstage? Find out more below!
We usually hold two new members audition dates each year. If you are interested in joining us and want to find out more, please complete the enquiry form below and our Membership Secretary will be in touch soon with more information.
At your audition, you will be asked to prepare a song of your choice. We will also ask you to perform a short monologue which will be sent to you in advance and will teach you a simple dance on the night which you will perform in a small group. If you need any help preparing for your audition, do get in touch.
Life as a member
Usually we aim to perform two shows a year open to all members as well as a variety of other performance opportunities, such as concerts. Rehearsals are usually held on Tuesday and Thursday evenings (usually 7.30pm -10pm). Generally, principals are called on Tuesdays and full company on Thursdays, however all cast can be called on both nights of the week – and this is usually the case in the latter stage of rehearsals. There are also some Sunday rehearsals. Our main rehearsal venue is St Clements Family Centre in Oxford city but we occasionally hold rehearsals in venues in Islip, Witney and Kennington.
Membership costs £190 a year or £17.50 a month via direct debit. This helps to cover the cost of shows, rehearsal venues, etc. However, we do not want these membership fees to stop talented individuals from joining our society. If you want to join but are concerned about the cost please do get in touch to discuss your options.
Behind the scenes
We know that performing on stage isn’t for everybody and we couldn’t do what we do without a huge team of people helping in many different ways. The areas we often need help are listed below. If you want to be involved in theatre on a volunteer basis then please do contact us.
- Costume design
- Sewing and dressmaking
- Backstage help
- Prop Coordinator
- Set Building
Creative and Production Team
Oxford Operatic Society produce a range of inclusive projects in musical theatre, dance, cabaret and operetta and so we continue to have exciting opportunities to be part of the creative, production and marketing teams for our projects. If this is something that interests you or you know someone who could be interested then read on and get in touch with Ed (Chair) or Dave (Development) for an informal chat.
All our roles require high levels of organisation and time keeping, excellent communication skills, energy, creativity and the ability to problem solve. Our hard working committee will support you from concept, throughout rehearsals, into show week and finally into a post-show evaluation. We’re even on hand to go for a drink to deal with those post-show blues! Job-shares are also possible.
The specific roles are:
Production manager – This person works closely with the creative team behind the scenes to get the production to the stage. Their responsibility includes budget management, coordinating task lists between costume and prop leads, liaising with the theatre and back stage crews leading up to and during show week. This person is also a key part in evaluating successes and weaknesses so we can learn for future projects – proven organisational and communications skills are needed. This role would be excellent to enhance a CV!
Costume lead – Under the direction of the production manager and working creatively with the director, this person will ensure the cast are kitted out in their costumes for the show. This can include designing and making bespoke costumes for niche requirements, sourcing or hiring costumes, or working with our extensive wardrobe collection to re-use and modify costumes. High levels of organisation are needed here with input throughout the rehearsal process.
Props lead – Also under the direction of the production manager and working creatively with the director, this person will ensure the production is fully equipped with the appropriate props and supporting items to achieve the look and feel of the show. The ability to work to a tight budget and be able to prevent losses and damage to props is important here, as well as working within our indexing and storage system.
Directors – We are looking for inspiring and passionate people who want to tell a story. Our directors work with a wide range of people within our membership so a proven ability to communicate their vision and instructions is crucial. Our members thrive on opportunities to excel and improve – you will be able to work with a whole “can-do” cast attitude. You would work closely with the musical director to shape the vision and performance values. Be assured, too, that Oxford Operatic Society are continually looking for innovative, fresh and interesting takes of both modern and traditional titles.
Musical directors – Our musical directors need a proven skill and experience in working with a large 35+ cast, medium (8-18) orchestras or bands and be familiar with the technical requirements of working in medium to large professional theatres. If there is a particular genre you enjoy most or you would like to be considered please get in touch. You would work closely with the director to shape the vision and performance values.
Choreographers – Are you passionate about pirouettes? Our membership has a wide range of ability from the movers to the move well to the dancers and dance finesse! Musical theatre staging is not about kick lines and spins in unison, it is about portraying the scene with energy and precision so the story is told to perfection. We are looking for people with proven experience in movement and dance, an excellent ability to plan and design accessible routines for a wide range of ability and be able to work closely with the director and musical director to shape the vision and performance values.
The director, musical director and choreographers represent a considerable input of time and we pay expenses to cover items including but not limited to travel costs, stationery and photocopying, food and drink.