About BMDS/Daylesford Theatre
Since 1945, BMDS has been a magnet to those who enjoy music and drama. Whether as performers, technicians or an audience, members have found BMDS to be the home of amateur theatre in Bermuda.
In its time, BMDS has produced a formidable list of shows and concerts, in its own theatre, “Daylesford”, at the City Hall Theatre and elsewhere. These range from classics written thousands of years ago to modern works by playwrights on both sides of the Atlantic. Over the years, concerts of varied works have been performed by the BMDS chorus, the Daylesford Singers and by the Daylesford Sinfonia Orchestra.
Dedicated to putting on good music and drama and bringing it to the widest possible audience, BMDS relies heavily on the voluntary efforts of its members. Apart from occasionally imported professional directors and musicians, BMDS employs no-one. From the membership secretary who will process your application, through the bartender who serves you a drink, to each and every person active in any production, you will be meeting and dealing with members acting in a voluntary capacity to further the aims and objectives of the Society and hopefully, to enjoy themselves.
The Society is run by an Executive Committee with fifteen elected members. Various aspects of the Society’s activities are run by sub-committees, each having a chairman who is an elected member of the Executive Committee. The Society’s constitution requires that the areas of Drama, Music, Bar and Premises management each have sub committee chairmen on the Executive Committee. Although not obliged to do so, the Executive Committee recognizes the impact of technology on the theatre and also has a Technical sub-committee chairman among its members. The Committee also has a social chair¬man, who manages the very active social calendar at BMDS.
There are other organisations active in the performing arts, many of which arose from the wishes of groups of members to concentrate on specific areas. Their names define their original objectives and examples are the Bermuda Folk Club and the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Bermuda. BMDS maintains a continuing, friendly relationship with them and each assists the other whenever possible.
The Society’s objectives were set out in the Bermuda Musical and Dramatic Society Act 1950 and these objectives include a commitment to training. In practice this has been achieved by a number of acting and technical workshops and, in most years, a season of rehearsed play readings. These are minimal budget productions designed to give the inexperienced an opportunity to “tread the boards” and to offer the chance for would-be “techies” to handle sets, lights, sound, stage and production management, under the supervision of experienced members.
With the benefit of its own bar and premises it should be no surprise that the Society has an active program of social events. In the past everything from Christmas to the Oscars have been marked by a BMDS party. Open to all members, these have attracted enthusiastic crowds and a good time was had by all.
Daylesford Theatre/Bar is located at the corner of Dundonald and Washington Streets in the city of Hamilton, just across from Victoria Park. You can reach us via email or by calling the bar at 295-5584 Monday to Friday from 5:30 pm.
Our membership forms can be found here. We also have membership forms at the bar. You only need to fill it out and have two members in good standing vouch for you with a signature and place the form along with payment in the membership box located near the bar entrance. All memberships are approved at a monthly BMDS Executive meeting. You will then receive a letter from the President welcoming you to the society and will begin receiving the weekly newsletter via email or by post, if you wish.
As a BMDS member, you are kept informed on a regular basis on all goings-on at BMDS via our weekly newsletter, the Daylesford Diva. BMDS is not just about theatre! We also stage musical productions, keep our members informed of other productions within the arts community and have a very active social calendar including members' barbeques, cruises, an annual golf tournament, holiday events and much more. As a member, you also have the opportunity to purchase tickets for our events prior to the general public and free parking in our lot on evenings and weekends, as long as the lot is available and not required for a BMDS function.
A Patron membership is approximately three times the cost of a Regular membership. The major perk of a Patron membership is that Patrons are given first opportunity to purchase tickets for the productions before anyone else. This is helpful if you want to purchase a large number of tickets (you'll have a better chance of getting the seats you want on the days you want) or if the show is extremely popular, you don't run the risk of missing out on getting tickets at all!
Yes, it is! You do not have to be a member of BMDS to get involved, but we do encourage membership to take advantage of all that BMDS has to offer.
No problem at all! There are so many things to do on a BMDS production - you will find something that speaks to you! If you can hammer a nail, paint a wall, lead someone to their seat, put a prop on stage or take it off, are comfortable with a computer and can sell tickets, mix a drink, hang a light, or just about anything else, we will find a job for you! Every production has a backstage crew and if you are interested in helping on one of our productions, please email us for more information.
Of course not! Come on down! Each production we stage has a "casting call" and as long as you are willing to audition and then tread the boards, we welcome anyone with or without experience. Unfortunately, we can't cast everyone - often we have many people audition for one part and then we have to make the tough decisions. When we have an upcoming production, our audition times are published in the Royal Gazette as well as on our website. Members are also kept apprised of upcoming auditions through our weekly newsletter, the Daylesford Diva.
BMDS is a 100% volunteer organization. Everyone (with the exception of the occasional visiting professional director and sometimes live musicians) works on a volunteer basis. We value any time you can spend volunteering with us so if you have an hour, a day, several days, a few weeks - anything! - we would love to hear from you!
Our productions generally do not have casting opportunities for young children, with the exception of the Christmas Pantomime, in which we cast children ages 8 years of age and up. Auditions for Panto usually take place around the end of September. If a young person is interested in the technical/backstage side of theatre, we may have some opportunities but it is dependent on the child's age and the nature of individual productions. Contact us for more information.
From time to time and depending on our volunteers/resources, we do offer educational opportunities. We will be running a drama camp for children in the summer of 2014 and information will be on the site shortly. Our members are made aware of these opportunities via our newsletter and you can find information when they are available on our website.
Yes! If you are looking for performers of any kind, we can send a message to our membership looking for them on your behalf. We do not charge for this service but will request that the interested parties contact you directly to arrange for auditions, payment, etc.
Unfortunately, no. We do not have the resources to manage rentals of our costumes. We can; however, put you in touch with people who can help. Contact us for more information.
This may be possible but we can only determine that with further information from you. Please contact us.
Yes, we would! Send us the information about your play to us and we will ensure it is gets before our Drama Committee - they meet on a regular basis and will review any scripts sent their way.
We have a total of 121 available seats in the theatre. One is not a fixed seat, but a space for a wheelchair. Two more are reserved for ushers, which we require for all productions due to fire regulations.
Most of the main floor of the building is accessible, including the bar and box office areas. We completed a renovation in 2012 to include a wheelchair accessible rest room behind the box office desk. As our building has been around for a long time, there is no wheelchair access to the second or third floors of the building. Unfortunately, the theatre space is not accessible through the foyer of the building, but is via the Dundonald Street door - contact the box office if you have booked the wheelchair spot for a production or if you just need a little extra help getting in and out of the theatre.
The Bermuda Musical and Dramatic Society is not a registered charity, but the BMDS Charitable Trust is. The Trust provides bursaries for Bermudian students interesting in furthering their education in the arts. Please click here - www.bmds.bm/trust - for more information on the Trust.
Thank you for your support! You may write a cheque to the BMDS Charitable Trust and mail it to us - our address is under the contact section of the website - or email firstname.lastname@example.org for banking information.
We welcome both members and non-members at any time from Monday to Friday from 5:30 pm until around 10:30 but sometimes we close earlier or later depending on how busy it is. We open the bar for all of our shows as well. It is operated entirely by volunteers.
Because we are a private members' club, we are required to have non-members sign in. We will not spam you! Theatregoers are not required to sign in during performance times. If you choose to frequent our bar on a regular basis, we do ask that you consider membership with BMDS - it's easy to join - just check our membership portion of the FAQs for further details.
You can purchase tickets online by going to the box office portion of the website or directly to www.express.bm. You can also purchase tickets by calling our box office on 292-0848 or at the box office in person - one hour before performances and also during times as stated on our website and our posters. Your membership allows you to purchase tickets prior to the general public - "Members' Box Office" dates usually occur a few days before tickets are available to the public.
Unfortunately, we cannot reserve seats prior to box office opening for anyone but Patron-level members.
When we produce a show, our members with Patron-level membership get the first opportunity to purchase their tickets. After Patron sales are finished, we offer tickets to the cast and crew of the show, then to the general membership of BMDS. Only then will we open ticket sales to the general public. As we have no idea how popular a show will be, we really don't know how many tickets we will have left for the public. Often, there are plenty of seats available but sometimes we are left with only a few. As members and cast/crew participants have first priority, the best way ensure you get your tickets is to become a member and/or get involved!
The cast and crew of our productions are all participating on a volunteer basis. Sometimes we can put on an extra show during the run but only if we have informed all of the participants of the possibility of that. For instance, if we haven't scheduled a performance on a day in the middle of the run and find that tickets are selling fast, we may be able to add a performance then. Running a show for longer than anticipated is problematic, as often our volunteers have made other arrangements for after the show is scheduled to end.
Unfortunately, we cannot refund your ticket as our box office system is not able to process refunds. However, you may post a notice on our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/bmds) letting others know that you have tickets to sell, or post on emoo.bm. You can advise the box office an hour before the performance that you have available tickets - just call 292-0848. We advise people looking for tickets to let the box office volunteer know as well - sometimes we can help ticket holders and ticket seekers find each other! Please, if you are unable to use your ticket, let the box office know or email us as soon as you can - we lament the sight of empty seats when we know folks are looking for tickets!
Unfortunately we cannot exchange tickets for another date at the box office. If tickets are still available for the date you want, it is advised that you go ahead and purchase for the desired date and then re-sell the original tickets. See the information above on how you can re-sell.
Please advise the box office volunteer. The House Manager for that performance will ensure that you get to and from your seat comfortably.
Rental of BMDS Facilities
Yes! We rent both spaces for private parties, theatre productions, company meetings, etc. Email us with your date(s) and we will contact you. Unfortunately, if a production is in the works or in performances, we often cannot offer the stage or the bar for a private function but we will do our best to accommodate you. The bar is not available for rental Monday to Friday evenings after 5:30. BMDS volunteer resources are required for any private rental. We cannot confirm your booking until those resources are found and confirmed for the event.
Members' General Info
No! Please do not park in the lot from 8 am to 5 pm Monday to Friday. The spots in our parking lot are rented and if you park there during this time you will be clamped and will have to fork out $100 to get the clamp removed. Parking after that time and on weekends is available to BMDS members, but please be aware that we must reserve the lot from time to time during BMDS productions/event.
If you join after the beginning of June, your membership will run until the end of August the following year. If you join before, you will be charged for the entire membership year. The membership fee runs from August 31 to August 31, but as our membership coordinator is a volunteer, it would be very difficult to manage the memberships as monthly as opposed to yearly.