Canada Packers Operatic Society
Canada Packers Operatic Society (Canada Packers Maple Leaf Choir 1942-3). Amateur group formed 1942 in Toronto under the patronage of J.S. McLean, president of Canada Packers (a meat processing company) and a supporter of the arts. After its first public presentation - The Gondoliers, 10, 12, and 15 May 1943 at Eaton Auditorium - it changed its name to the CPOS and continued to mount annual productions until 1955. At first the society concentrated on the most familiar works of Gilbert & Sullivan (Iolanthe, H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance), but in its fifth season, with Utopia (Limited), it began to present the lesser-known pieces and also popular works of other composers (eg, Edward German's Merrie England). With a membership almost exclusively of Canada Packers employees and their families, the CPOS featured as its soloists James Green and Mary Black and one regular guest artist, Arthur Sclater. W. Richard Curry served as producer and music director. Productions were discontinued with J.S. McLean's death in 1955.