Mike Webster, president of Philo in 1980 and 1984-86, wrote a history of the association from 1951 to 1989, a valuable resource for anyone interested in Canberra’s early theatrical beginnings. Philo was founded in 1951 by members of the Canberra Male Singers and others. The New Society’s first performance at Albert Hall was a concert version of Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Yeomen of the Guardfollowed in 1952 by the gondoliers. In 1953 the first large-scale, costumed productions, Bless the Bride and The Arcadians. Many shows followed and most were well received and made money, with the proceeds from each show allowing the next one to be organized by the non-profit group.