History of TALOS
Te Awamutu Light Operatic Society was formed in 1975.
It quickly built up many physical assets such as props, costumes and backdrops. These were stored in various places around town and had to be transported (sometimes carried by hand) to whichever venue was being used for a show.
This meant shows were not rehearsed on the performance stage and sets had to be built off-site.
It wasn’t long before the idea of our own “home” was mooted.
About 1980 the idea really took off and serious suggestions were discussed and initial plans drawn up. Prices were quoted but, in reality, this was more akin to a civic centre and beyond the financial resources of the society.
A Permanent Home
In 1985 preliminary talks were held with Woolaway Construction and before long a proposed design and budget were decided upon.
Woolaway Construction erected the shell and exterior walls of the building with the interior being completed by volunteers and members as time and money became available.
Site preparations October 1985
Progress, November 1985
Over the years several alterations have been made, with the most dramatic being the extension to the northern side of the building. This was done to accommodate the workshop and to provide extra space in the wings as well as adding another dressing room and more space on the mezzanine floor to make way for more costumes.
When the grand piano was removed from the theatre, the orchestra pit was reconfigured.
Over the years new chairs and heat pumps have been purchased, along with improved lighting and sound equipment.
In 2019 a full refurbishment has been undertaken with the exterior being painted and the interior being enhanced with improved tiered seating for our audiences and new carpet for their comfort.
We are a small society with a big heart and it is great to see continued interest in our craft.
The name of the theatre, “The Woolshed” was born out of the firm who did the initial construction, the shape ( which people thought looked like a woolshed) and maybe, because it is in a rural town.
It is quite coincidental that the local saleyards were right next door!