The first seeds for what eventually became Catchment Players were sown in 1965 with the commencement of a very strong theatre program at Reservoir High School. The School became renowned statewide for the excellent standard of their musical productions. However, there were no local theatre groups operating in the northern suburbs which led to students of Reservoir High School having to travel to the eastern suburbs to continue a career in the performing arts.
Catchment Players was formed in 1975 when Michael Blake, a teacher at Reservoir High, convened a meeting for the purpose of forming a theatre group in the Preston/Reservoir area. The name Catchment was chosen to reflect its relationship to the School and area, ie. a ‘catchment’ is a ‘reservoir’.
The aims were to encourage community interest in theatre and to provide a local outlet for ex-students of Reservoir High School. Initially Catchment Players was confined to ex-students of that school but within twelve months it became obvious that such a policy would inhibit the Group’s progress. Since 1976 an amazing variety of people have passed through the Group from all walks of life and backgrounds all over Victoria. Catchment has always sought to progress and to fulfil an important role in the community.
In 1991 Catchment Singers was formed by David Rogers-Smith and a group of about 20 regular singers rehearsed every Thursday evening at the Senior Citizens Centre in Wright Street, Reservoir. Unfortunately due to various circumstances Singers disbanded in October 2004.
Catchment Kids was formed in 2000 by Anna Marinelli to encourage and nurture the participation of our young talents in all facets of the Performing Arts. A “kids” concert was held every year up to 2005 then in August 2006 we commenced our junior musical productions which have been very successful.
Over many years Catchment Players assisted with the planning and design of the Darebin Arts & Entertainment Centre on the corner of Bell Street and St. Georges Road, Preston. Many of our productions over the years have been staged there. However, due to rising theatre costs our current home theatre is the Banyule Theatre in Heidelberg.
A Committee, which is elected annually, manages the company and the AGM is held in February. Catchment actively encourages all performers to assist in set building, painting, costumes, prop making and publicity.
Mission Statement: Catchment Players aims to provide a medium to encourage and nurture interested parties in all aspects of the performing arts and to provide high quality entertainment.
President – Brad Fischer
Vice President – Beverley Meldrum
Secretary – Carla Gianinotti
Treasurer – Jeff Maxwell
General Committee – Hannah Bailey, Georgina Bourke, Cathy Denovan, Vic Luke, Kelly Trenery, Robyn Trenery, Teresa Xanthos