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News: 20th Anniversary of the Cathedral Girls' Choir


The launch of the girl choristers of Guildford Cathedral Choir took place on 14 March 2003 at 6.30pm, at the Guildhall. A search had begun for ‘musical girls’ in 2002, and a group of twelve girls first formed in November of that year and began rehearsing together. The vision of all involved at that time in the Cathedral’s life gave girl choristers opportunities to sing as part of the Cathedral’s musical provision to its worshipping community and beyond that to offer music to the diocese.

Since that time, under the direction of Louise Marsh, David Davies and Katherine Dienes-Williams, supported by vocal coach Hilary Jones, hundreds of girls have come to take part in this unique musical and spiritual education, supported by their families and friends. They have been at the centre of the Cathedral’s musical offering, singing at services of worship, weddings, funerals, memorial services, county services, diocesan services, singing at churches in the diocese, live broadcasts on BBC Radio 3, tours to France, the Netherlands, Italy and Spain, BBC Young chorister of the year, BBC Songs of Praise and as part of CD recordings and concerts both here at the Cathedral and elsewhere.

This academic year alone, the girls were represented through former BBC Young chorister of the year Ruby who sang with the RPO alongside boy chorister Arthur in John Rutter’s Christmas Celebrations in the Royal Albert Hall. On Wednesday 8 March they broadcast Choral Evensong live on BBC Radio 3 for International Women’s Day and all the girls will be singing alongside fellow girl choristers from the Cathedrals of Southwark and St. Albans with the Bach Choir and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in the Palm Sunday performance of the St. Matthew Passion at the Royal Festival Hall on 2 April.

These girls – and their predecessors – are determined, committed, loyal, friendly, engaging young people, all of whom have left a tremendous legacy of resilience, growth, positivity and musicianship for those who will come after. None of these opportunities for growth would be possible without the tremendous support and encouragement of Chapter, of the girls’ families and friends and sponsors.

If you are interested in contributing to the legacy of the choir through financial support, please contact Nicola Pratt, and find out how you can help.

Added Wednesday 1st February 2023