Blantyre Amateur Dramatic Club

Formed in 1896 under the management of Mr Walter Gowans of Hamilton. The Club made steady progress in terms of membership and awareness in their initial years since their first performance tackling the Scottish drama of “Rob Roy”.

In 1897, during their second year, their selection for the season’s opening was the exciting Irish Drama, “The Shaughraun” which was put on during Tue 9th November 1897 and the three subsequent evenings in the Stonefield Masonic Hall. Large and enthusiastic audiences filled the hall on each occasion and the whole proceedings passed without a hitch or any delay between the acts. The production was notable with the scenery provided by Hamilton Amateur Dramatic Club and the dresses provided by Glasgow and the West of Scotland Theatrical Costume Company.

Music was provided by Motherwell String Band under leadership of Mr Alex Hodge. The drama was well known to many people in the audience so proved a delight to see it acted out. It was abundant with humour, love passages, and excitement. Performances were worthy though it could be seen some nervous faces as they came out on stage. Mr H. McLinden was Conn the Shaughraun. Miss M Small played the part of his mother who did well defying her years in acting the part of an old woman. Other actors were Mr T Naismith, Mr A McLean, and J McGreevy. Mr H Philip, Jessie Crawford, and Miss N Colgan also gave notable performances.

Other actors included known businessmen, like Mr JBH Struthers, Mr A Kirkland, and Mr. J.A Smith. The Club was still known to exist in February 1903. Mr Walter McKay was a member who left that month for America.  

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