Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Talented Performer Devoted to Theatre; Popular Director Had Great Enthusiasm for Life

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Talented Performer Devoted to Theatre; Popular Director Had Great Enthusiasm for Life

Article excerpt

GAVIN Moray Drummond was born on March 19, 1924, the youngest of five brothers.

His father, James, who was of Scottish ancestry, died before Gavin turned five, so he was raised by his Danish mother, Magdalene (Madge), who had a cake shop in Ruthven St, Toowoomba.

He and his brothers were given piano lessons, and when his mother took him to the Empire Theatre to see JC Williamson's production of White Horse Inn, it sparked a lifelong interest and love of musical theatre.

Mr Drummond's other lifelong passion was travel, but his first overseas trip was courtesy of the Australian Army. At the age of 18 he joined the army and signed up for the artillery, eventually arriving at Milne Bay. After several months of working with the Americans, he went on to Lae and then to the Bouganville Islands, where he received metal wounds to both legs from an exploding landmine.

At the end of the war in the Pacific, Mr Drummond was one of the few at the third division headquarters to witness the first line of Japanese surrendering with white flags, and he also witnessed the Japanese signing the surrender.

In 1946, after the war, he worked for Searle's Florist and delivered lots of flowers to Sister Kenny at her new home near Webb Park and they became close friends. He was invited to sit with Sister Kenny's group at the world premiere when a film was made of her life.

During the 1950s Mr Drummond formed the Modern Revue Company and produced seven musicals. In 1954, the former governor of Queensland, Sir John Laverack, and Lady Laverack attended Nylons and Nonsense, one of Mr Drummond's productions.

During that season more than 10,000 people attended, and all the money went to charities such as St Luke's Building War Memorial Appeal, St James Church, Oakey CWA, Bush Nurses, Subnormal Children's School at Harristown, RSL Band and St Thomas's Tennis Club. Other musical revues were Carnival, Painting the Clouds with Sunshine, Happy Go Lucky, Talk of the Town and Footlight Frolics, some running six nights to full houses. …

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