The Society was inaugurated on 18 December 1924, and such was the interest that within the first 12 months had recruited over 300 members.
Throughout the winter months the Society arranged in-house lectures, concerts, recitals, and performances for the Membership with average attendances exceeding 150. Then came World War II which changed everything with many members being ‘called up’ to serve in the armed forces. However, throughout the war years the reduced membership travelled all over the South of Scotland giving opera performances to the troops.
Shortly after the war in 1946 the Society was persuaded to give a performance for ‘The Queen’s Nurses Pension Fund’ to which, for the first time, members of the public were admitted. This proved such a success that it instigated the annual EDGAS public performances which have continued ever since.
Since that original meeting in 1924 there have been many changes. Not the least of which were the monthly lectures which, 80 years on, had lost their appeal and despite the best of efforts were abandoned in 2004. They did however make an unexpected re- appearance in 2020/21, when the President initiated a very successful series of talks and performances via Zoom.
In recent years the Society has diversified, with Autumn performances of non-G&S works such as Carousel and J.C. Superstar. A policy which has recruited many new members into the G&S fold.
The Society’s main energies nowadays are directed to the many weeks of rehearsal required for the Annual Production(s), and of course the large concert in the Usher Hall with the band of H M Royal Marines.