The New England Gilbert and Sullivan Society (NEGASS) is an organization dedicated to fostering the appreciation of the works of Sir William Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan, who jointly produced 14 comic operettas in Victorian England. To that end, we engage in activities such as the following:
- hosting meetings at which we present guest lecturers, concerts, and staged readings
- attending Gilbert & Sullivan productions throughout the region
- publishing a bi-monthly newsletter, The Trumpet Bray, which presents news about upcoming G&S events and reviews of past ones
- maintaining an email list, through which we send timely updates to our members between issues of the Bray
- offering financial support to organizations producing G&S performances by placing advertisements in their programs on behalf of our society
Founded in 1976, NEGASS is affiliated with the original Gilbert and Sullivan Society in England, which has branches throughout the world. Our society’s founder was the late Warren Colson, a local performer, photographer, and author of the Gilbert and Sullivan Concordance.
In the terminology of the G&S world, NEGASS and the Gilbert & Sullivan Society are appreciation societies, rather than performing groups. Many of our members belong to local G & S performing groups, however, and we do our best to puff their performances!
Our dues-paying members, who number approximately 200, are found on four continents — although candor compels us to admit that our Japanese and Australian members have not attended any recent meetings!
Our constitution describes our official purpose and governance in more detail. Simply put: we seek to help not only our own members, but all Savoyards in the New England area, by connecting people in need of G&S information, expertise or materials with others who have what they need.
Our meetings take place eight to ten times each year. The format and content are quite varied, ranging from unrehearsed, uncostumed sing-alongs to polished live concerts; from G&S karaoke to scholarly lectures and panel discussions; from cookouts to group attendance at performances; from costume parties to performances of Gilbert without Sullivan or Sullivan without Gilbert. The list is limited only by the imagination of the membership! We welcome your proposals for meetings of all kinds. Tell us, we pray you!
We have placed a number of G&S-related volumes in the Warren Colson Memorial Collection, which is housed at the Newton Free Library in Newton, MA.
We are also eager to place NEGASS ads in programs of G&S performances. Please contact us if you’re putting on a G&S or G&S-related show! – you’ll receive free publicity, and we’ll be happy to purchase an ad in your program as well.
Further suggestions for supporting local G&S performing and research communities are very welcome.