Web Surfing Can Be So Worthwhile.

While doing a wee bit of research in connection with compiling a list of stage appearances for the period 1963 to 1988 of company members, so I decided to Google “SMYCMS” and see what came up, and reassuringly there was smycms .com at No.1,  then about 6 pages down I came across  an article from the Scotsman promoting our production of My Fair Lady in 2004, it read,

! Smycms – which stands for St Michael’s Youth Club Musical Section – was founded in 1963 by Elizabeth Fyfe and Colin MacDonald as part of the youth club run by St Michael’s Church on Slateford Road. The company, which is no longer affiliated to the church and now boasts members of all ages, has become one of the Capital’s most consistent amateur musical societies. Past triumphs include the Edinburgh premiere of Fiddler on the Roof, and last year’s Singing in the Rain.
“When I started the company 41 years ago I had just four members,” recalls Elizabeth Fyfe, who is now the club’s president. “For our first concert I had to ask them all to bring along a friend and tickets were 2/- 6d each.”

Changed days indeed, now tickets are £15 or more for an Amateur show, though asking members to bring along friends is still a key part in getting seats filled.

Next I clicked images and there unsurprisingly was an image of Tony making an eejit of himself (AGAIN? Ed)  amongst the usual show pics, but then I noticed one I had never seen before, Printed here courtesy of Yamini Ali MacLean.

The Merry Widow 1984

The Merry Widow 1984

At the time of the photo she was known as Ali MacLean, she is the girl on the right (Hope your right Tony or you’ll get a dunt on the back of your head if you are wrong. Ed), Ali now lives in Australia and is now known as Yamini after she was embraced by Hinduism, as she recalls,

A work colleague in Edinburgh had been a long-term member of an amateur musical group and she invited me to join up.  I spent three seasons with the SMYCMS (Saint Michaels Youth Club Musical Society).  First there was The Most Happy Fella (Frank Loesser). Next was Lilac Time (Franz Schubert) and then my favorite, The Merry Widow (Franz Lehar). Favorite not just for the music, the story or that it was so big we had to move to a larger theater.  

It was the costumes. I was built for those costumes. This is the only photo I have and the scanning has not improved it. The tiara was hand made by yours truly. The dress was all mother’s work. It had a lush ‘train’ and there was just a hint of ‘bustle’ about it.”

So Jearnette Fyfe did not make all the costumes then ? (She certainly made loads of costumes Tony….. you’ve probably worn quite.  a few yourself. Ed) Well does anyone remember Ali or anyone else in the photo ( we know it’s not you Tony as you didn’t join for another few years. Ed) as usual drop me a line with your thoughts or recollections. Funny enough Ali remembers Alistair T. even back then he used to wing it !! (only joking A.T. Ed)  Look forward to hearing from you all. Tony,

2 Responses to “Web Surfing Can Be So Worthwhile.”
  1. Alistair Thomas says:

    Winging it doesn’t even cover my part in The Merry Widow. I was living and working in London and came home for two weeks to do the show. Madness really.


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