Surrey Cantata - '... this closely knit group of nineteen singers ...' (Surrey Advertiser)
was formed by Sebastian Forbes in May 2008, as an ad hoc vocal ensemble for singing
concerts and church services.
By intention, it is smaller than most chamber choirs,
and its exact constitution for each event depends on what is required for the occasion,
venue and programme.
Prominent in the choir's short history are their annual tours to Brittany - three
concerts each July - and regular appearances in Guildford's two biennial music festivals.
They also sing in church services, the full choir for larger venues such as Southwark
Cathedral, or smaller forces for smaller churches.
Since its inception in May 2008,
a smaller section of Surrey Cantata has often sung at special services, particularly
at East and West Clandon churches, for weddings, etc.
The choir was formed with ease, with membership drawn from several choirs that Sebastian
Forbes has conducted over the years, in particular the Horniman Singers, Guildford
Chamber Choir, and former students who sang under him in the University of Surrey
Membership for each event of Surrey Cantata is by personal invitation rather than
by audition. This process ensures that the highest musical standards are achieved
with a small number of singers. Each individual feels committed to making a genuine
contribution towards a closely integrated manner of performance.