Formed in 1964 by a group of enthusiasts and named Caprian Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society, they produced their first musical play, Salad Days, by Sandy Wilson in 1965. The chosen venue for this production was the Gateshead Little Theatre, the only purpose built theatre in Gateshead. To this day all of the musical productions have been performed in this venue.
The then Society became affiliated to the National Operatic and Dramatic Association, NODA, and due to the geographic location was assigned to its Northern Area.
Many of the musical productions are claimed to be Northern Premier productions being the first time that the shows were presented by amateurs in the NODA Northern Area. It was always intended that musical productions (although not a constitutional requirement) would wherever possible be chosen from the list of shows which were suitable for a small cast and venue and not from the list of popular shows so often presented by the other larger Societies in the area. This principle has always been adhered to although some of the shows that were produced eventually became popular enough for the other larger Societies to present.
The first pantomime presentation was Aladdin in 1967 at the little Theatre. Three more pantomimes were to be presented there until it was realised that the venue was too small for such productions. Seating capacity of only 180 was not enough to satisfy the demand by patrons and with such a small capacity it was difficult to recover costs with the subsequent risk of running a show at a financial loss. The larger venue of the now demolished Heathfield Senior High School was the venue for the first production outside of the Little Theatre, Red Riding Hood in 1972. Since the following year all pantomime productions have taken place at the then Gateshead Girls Grammar School now named the Dryden Centre.
The Society name was changed in 2006 to the Caprian Theatre Company.