One of the advantages of living in a university college is the opportunities it gives for performances of all kinds, formal and informal, practised and impromptu, musical, theatrical and rhetorical, especially in the evenings.

See also music and the Palladian Cup.


Mummers is the St Paul’s College dramatic society. Mummers was founded in 1948 by the then Warden, Dr Felix Arnott, and is one of the longest continuously-running university drama groups in the country. Besides involving members of St Paul’s College, it involves players from the Women’s College and occasionally other colleges. Not only actors, but scriptwriters, producers, directors and stage staff are involved.

From time to time a good number of Paulines have also been involved in the Sydney University Dramatic Society (SUDS).

Debating and public speaking

There are various forms of debating at the College – ranging from the topical and the serious to the more light-hearted and frivolous. The highlight of the debating year is the hotly contested Inter-Collegiate Debating competition which sees the College’s most senior debaters pit their minds against the best of the other Colleges in a traditional three-on-three closed preparation debate.

Comedy debates are also held from time to time in the College, pitting freshers against seniors or members of St Paul’s against invited teams from other Colleges or the University. Many Paulines also represent the University in debating at a Varsity, National or Worlds level.

For those wishing to shine on an individual level, there are also many public-speaking opportunities. The Inter-Collegiate Oration was started in 1985 and is now part of the Palladian Cup competition.  The orator from St Paul’s who performs at the highest level during this competition is awarded the Asimus Medal.

“The heart has its reasons of which reason knows nothing.” Blaise Pascal