Way back in 1959, members of the Methodist Church in Dun Laoghaire set up a group to perform drama and musical events. This group, the Dun Laoghaire Methodist Dramatic Society, flourished over the following decades, performing at least one major show every year. Despite the name, the shows gradually became more musical than dramatic in nature. The membership of the Society grew as the years passed, and also became ecumenical, attracting members from all parts of the local and wider Dun Laoghaire area.
Until 2003, the annual shows were performed in the Methodist Hall in Northumberland Avenue. Audiences were regularly bowled over by the fact that full Musical productions of extremely high quality could be performed on the tiny stage in the hall. All nooks and crannies in the hall were used as changing and set storage areas, with virtually all costumes and sets made by hand by members.
In 2003, it was decided that the Society should move its performances down the road to the new Pavilion Theatre, whose stage and facilities offered scope for more ambitious productions. This move involved greater costs for the society, and this required greater fund-raising activities; however, it allowed an increased membership and scale of musical production. Consequently, it was also decided to reconstitute the Society as a community group without formal linkage to the Methodist Church. This change was formalised on 24 November 2003 when the new Society was re-launched in the Town Hall as the Dun Laoghaire Musical and Dramatic Society (DMDS).
The new society has grown in status since 2003 and has won many awards for its annual shows, and also for the performance of its choir. Our sell-out performances regularly feature in ‘Best in Ireland’ nominations and awards from the Association of Irish Musical Societies (AIMS). In particular, the Society has won the AIMS Best Choral Group competition annually from 2006 to 2010.
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