About the Choir
Capel Choral Society is a friendly, non-auditioning choir rehearsing on Monday evenings, 7.45-9.45pm, in Capel Memorial Hall, near Dorking, Surrey. For over 100 years, Capel Choral Society has drawn people of all ages and backgrounds to unite for the common purpose of making music.
The highlight of the choir's year comes each spring when we compete in the Leith Hill Musical Festival at Dorking Halls, which culminates in an evening concert with the massed choirs of our division, in which we perform the competition works with full orchestra and professional soloists. In addition to LHMF, the choir performs a concert of Christmas music each year, and holds various other events, for example in 2012 we held an outdoor Proms-style concert with orchestra and soloists in celebration of the Queen's Jubilee.
To find out more about the choir's forthcoming events, see our concerts page. On this page we introduce our conductor and accompanist. We have recently appointed a new conductor, Stuart Longley, who took over from Ben Costello in September
Stuart comes to us with a music degree at Exeter University, followed by a 4 month Internship with the BBC Philharmonic Education Department, 9 months at a musician’s diary service in nearby Dorking, followed by a 20 year teaching career, all the while developing his conducting interests alongside.
Anthea Smallwood, Accompanist
Anthea has been involved with choirs since the age of seven and accompanying from the age of 13. She studied at the Royal College of Music in London and then took a teachers’ Certificate of Education at the University of Exeter.
She has worked in secondary schools as a music teacher and for Surrey County Arts as a peripatetic music teacher. She has accompanied Capel Choral Society for nearly 25 years and neighbouring Beare Green & Newdigate Choral Society since 1988.