About Us

History of the Rep Club

The Goldfields Repertory Club was formed in 1931 at a meeting in a house in Kalgoorlie by a group of interested artistic people led by Charles Gordon a “teacher of elocution and dramatic art”. Mr Gordon, due to his expertise and interest, was elected the first president of the club.

The Laver sisters, (daughters of Dr Laver from Laverton) Elizabeth and Sheila were enthusiastic members from the first and performed in many of the early plays, some written by Mr Gordon specifically for the club.

Other prominent members of the club over the years were Senator Seddon Vincent, Freida Vincent and Ray Omodei, who went on to become a prominent director and theatre manager in Australia.

Former patrons over the years have included the Mayor of Kalgoorlie, RG Moore and the Bishop of Kalgoorlie, the Right Reverend CEB Muschamp. Office bearers have included the Mayor of Kalgoorlie, EE Brimage Esq. as Vice President (1936) and Lorna Mitchell as President.

After the club was formed, the members spent many years meeting and performing in various venues around Kalgoorlie and Boulder. These included a meeting room and the stage at the Kalgoorlie Town Hall, the Boulder Town Hall, and "a long and happy association with the RSL who made their hall available at a very small charge for the then fortnightly club evenings." (Matthew, F. 1990)

In 1938, the Club was able to secure permission to use the premises in Brookman Street. The building was a former synagogue and use came with certain restrictions on behaviour. A stage was built and seating was acquired from the Princess Theatre, Fremantle, which was closing down.

In 1967, the Club purchased the building from the Jewish community and our home became our own. Unfortunately, in April 1972, there was a fire at the Club and the building was burnt to the ground. We lost our home, our extensive wardrobe, historical props and sets from many happy years of theatre production.

Undaunted, in the following months, the Committee secured the purchase of a building from the railway yards to start again. A long period of public productions staged to aid the rebuilding followed and a four-stage building programme over six years began. The theatre that stands now was opened in April 1976. Members painted and built and hammered with a will to get the building ready for a gala celebration which attracted a capacity crowd.

The Repertory Club has had a continued successful presence on the Goldfields and in Kalgoorlie-Boulder from 1931 to the current year and in 2011 on November 24th celebrated its 80th birthday. The 80th anniversary year included a gala cocktail party and other events to commemorate the fact the Rep Club is the oldest amateur theatre club in country Western Australia.

The Club has, over the years, used many methods to raise money to improve the building, including “donate a chair” and the “carpet cash caper”. Our present membership is endeavouring to upgrade the building to a better version of its 37-year-old self which, despite ongoing maintenance, has need of renovation to bring it into the 21st century as a truly modern home for amateur theatre in the Goldfields.