Four days of music, history and natural beauty.


St Mary's Church
Stoke D'Abernon
KT11 3PX

www.surreybachfest.com

Information

The Surrey Bach Festival is a brand-new classical music festival, held over four days in July at St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon.

Tickets

Visit our What’s On page to find our more about our concerts and events. Tickets can all be purchased in advance at Ticketsource, or with more limited availability on the door. Book ahead to avoid disappointment, as our events may sell out!

Travel

Getting to St Mary’s is comfortable, with many travel options available.By train:
Cobham and Stoke D’Abernon is the closest train station to St Mary’s, situated on the line between Guildford and London Waterloo. Trains run every half an hour, and the church is a 15 minute walk from the station with taxis also available.
By car:
There is plenty of parking available at the church, which is situated in the grounds of Parkside School. We are situated on Stoke Road, just to the east of the centre of Stoke D’Abernon, directly opposite Squires Garden Centre.

St Mary’s Church at Stoke D’Abernon

St Mary’s Church is a fascinating patchwork building that tells the story of centuries of British history. We’re thrilled to be able to celebrate some beautiful early music in its historical walls!The church was originally built in the 7th century by Anglo-Saxons. Many churches like this were built in the area after the Gregorian mission from Rome introduced Christianity to the Anglo-Saxons in the late 6th century.Countless people from different cultures, countries and time periods have left their mark on St Mary’s Church in the centuries it’s stood in Stoke D’Abernon. Look out for these little quirks and treasures when you visit — each of them tells a story.Architecture
- Bricks, tiles and worked stones from Roman buildings that were reused to build the Anglo-Saxon church. These can be easily seen among the large field flints of the exterior walls of the church.
- The high-level doorway to the thegn’s gallery, visible in the south wall of the church. St Mary's Church was built on private land by a feudal lord and is the earliest English example of a church with a thegn’s gallery.
- The present square-ended chancel, which replaced the rounded Saxon apse in 1240. The axis of the chancel was likely aligned to the sunrise.
- A surviving section of a gorgeous 13th century mural painting of the Adoration of the Lamb on the east wall.
Objects
- An 16 rank organ designed and voiced for the church in 1975 by the legendary Frobenius of Copenhagen.
- A stone Roman cinerary coffret from the 2nd century AD — the oldest artefact in the church.
- A 17th century heptagonal walnut pulpit supported by seven part-animal, part-human caryatids. The words “Faith comes from what is heard” (Romans 10:17) are gilded into a column so they can only be read by the priest.
- The monumental brass of Sir John the Elder — one of the finest brasses in existence.
You can read an even more in-depth description of St Mary’s Church and its historical characteristics on the church website.

Things to do in the area

St Mary’s Church is in a great location for nature fans. We’ve listed eight popular nearby walks with travel times, facilities, accessibility, and other important information.We also recommend Surrey Walks - a wonderful blog dedicated to sharing the best routes and trails for exploring Surrey on foot.

Oxshott Heath

National Forest | 9 minutes drive

Facilities: Free parking.
Accessibility: No toilets. Wheel-accessible by paths.
Other information: Try the popular 6.1km loop trail from The Old Plough, a 300 year old courthouse turned pub, to Oxshott Heath. The route heads out on the footpaths alongside Knowle Hill Park and Littleheath Common Ponds to Oxshott Heath, a beautiful woodland, heath and common.

The Homewood

20th c. Cubist country residence and gardens | 9 minutes drive

Facilities: Free parking at the house.
Accessibility: No toilets. Most showrooms are on the first floor, which can only be accessed by a spiral staircase.
Other information: Open for pre-booked tours.

Esher Commons

Hiking area | 10 minutes drive

Facilities: Free parking (limited space).
Accessibility: No toilets. Wide, well maintained paths for the majority of the route.

Claremont Landscape Gardens

10 minutes drive

Facilities: Free parking (opens 10am). Additional car park can be found in West End Lane (not National Trust). Disabled parking available. Cafe open daily with indoor and outdoor seating.
Accessibility: Adapted toilet with ramp access in car park. All-terrain wheelchair available to hire. Accessible path around the perimeter of the lake, and many benches.

Bookham Commons

Nature reserve | 14 minutes drive

Facilities: Paid parking (free for National Trust members) at Tunnel car park. Free parking at Mark Oak Gate. Free parking at Hundred Pound Bridge.
Accessibility: No toilets. Access for mobility vehicles and wheelchairs to the bird hide at the upper eastern pond. All-weather surfaced bridle paths. Benches.
Other information: Well-controlled dogs are welcome. Please keep them on leads where livestock are grazing.

Box Hill Stepping Stones

Tourist attraction | 16 minutes drive

Facilities: Parking, shop.
Accessibility: Challenging for people with reduced mobility. There is a steep descent from the top of Box Hill down to the River Mole with 275 steps before the bottom. The pathways can get slippery when wet.
Other information: Dog friendly. Dogs should be kept on leads near livestock. 1 hour 30 mins trail.

Norbury Park

Nature reserve | 19 minutes drive

Facilities: Free parking at Fetcham car park, Young Street car park and Crabtree car park. Picnic area.
Accessibility: Not suitable for wheelchair users or those with limited mobility.
Other information: Dogs permitted under effective control (grazing cattle).


what’s on: 2024


Young Artists Showcase

Thursday 11th July | 1:00pm
Friday 12th July | 1:00pm

Local school-age musicians from the Elmbridge area perform two lunchtime concerts at the Surrey Bach Festival.

BACH: Motets

The Queenes Chappell

Thursday 11th July | 7:30pm

Vocal ensemble The Queenes Chappell perform a choral concert of sacred works by J.S. Bach and lesser-known German composer Heinrich Schütz.

VENUS + ADONIS: John Blow

Istante Opera; cond. Matthew Brown

Friday 12th July | 7:00pm

Istante Opera present John Blow’s beautiful Restoration opera Venus and Adonis, in a semi-staged production alongside Jean-Baptiste Lully’s La Naissance de Venùs, first seen at Baroquestock Festival in May 2024.

COME AND SING: Vivaldi + Bach

Saturday 13th July | 10:00am - 7:00pm

Join conductor Matthew Brown for a day of working on Vivaldi’s timeless GLORIA and Bach’s beautiful JESU MEINE FREUDE. Workshops in the morning and afternoon will conclude with an exciting showcase performance in the beautiful St Mary’s Church.

STEVEN DEVINE, harpsichord

Sunday 14th July | 1:00pm

Acclaimed harpsichordist Steven Devine performs a lunchtime concert of harpsichord works by J.S. Bach and other great baroque composers.

SURREY BACH FESTIVAL ORCHESTRA

Sunday 14th July | 7:30pm

Formed for this inaugural festival, the Surrey Bach Festival Orchestra performs a selection of baroque orchestral works by J.S. Bach and his contemporaries, directed from the harpsichord by Steven Devine.


YOUNG ARTIST SHOWCASE

Thursday 11th July | 1:00pm
Friday 12th July | 1:00pm

St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon

Over the first two days of the festival, local school-age musicians have been invited to perform in lunchtime showcase concerts at the Surrey Bach Festival.Entrance is free for these concerts; we are excited to be able to support young musicians with important performing opportunities and we look forward to seeing you there in support!


Bach: MOTETS

Thursday 11th July | 7:30pm

St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon

The Queenes Chappell, one of the UK’s premier solo-voice choirs specialising in historical repertoire, performs an exciting programme of choral music by J.S. Bach and one of his most highly regarded predecessors; Heinrich Schütz.Bach’s choral music stands as some of his best-known and loved compositions, with intricate vocal lines weaving around each other in a dense texture. Performed one-to-a-part, this will be an exciting and moving evening.


VENUS + ADONIS:
John Blow

Friday 12th July | 7:00pm

St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon

Istante Opera, a new fringe opera company resident at Baroquestock Festival in North London, present a new and exciting production of John Blow’s Restoration opera Venus and Adonis, alongside Jean-Baptiste Lully’s ballet La Naissance de Venús.Promising beautiful music on a grand scale, with high-level soloists, orchestra and chorus, a night of spectacle, excitement, and hummable tunes is in store.


COME AND SING DAY
Vivaldi and Bach

Saturday 13th July | 10:00am - 7:00pm

St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon

Reserve your place now for an exciting day of workshops on Vivaldi’s timeless GLORIA and Bach’s beautiful JESU MEINE FREUDE, with SBF’s Artistic Director Matthew Brown.Morning and afternoon workshops will culminate in a showcase performance in St Mary’s Church at 6:00pm. Limited places available, so book now to avoid disappointment!


STEVEN DEVINE, harpsichord

Sunday 14th July | 1:00pm

St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon

Internationally acclaimed harpsichordist Steven Devine, principal keyboard of the OAE, performs a lunchtime harpsichord recital.Featuring beautiful music by J.S. Bach and his contemporaries, including some well-known keyboard works, this contemplative lunchtime performance will be followed by refreshments and a chance to meet the artist.

Bach and his Influences

STEVEN DEVINE, harpsichord

Praeludium in G Minor, BuxWV 163


Toccata II


Partite “Auff die Maÿerin”
Prima Partita
Seconda Partita
Terza Partita
Quarta Partita
Quinta Partita
Sexta Partita - Crommatica
Courant sopra Maÿerin - Double
Saraband sopra Maÿerin


“French” Suite No. 4, BWV 815
Allemande
Courante
Sarabande
Gavotte
Menuet
Air
Gigue

Dietrich Buxtehude (c. 1637 - 1707)


Johann Jakob Froberger (1616 - 1667)


Johann Jakob Froberger









Johann Sebastian Bach (1685 - 1750)

Artist Biography

STEVEN DEVINE

Steven Devine combines a career as a conductor and director of orchestral, choral and opera repertoire with that of a solo harpsichordist and fortepianist. He is the Conductor and Artistic Advisor of The English Haydn Festival; Music Director of New Chamber Opera, Oxford and Director of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment’s “Bach the Universe & Everything” series.On the concert platform, he has directed Purcell, Blow, Bach, Handel and Mozart with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment; Bach Easter Oratorio with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales; Haydn, Handel, CPE Bach, JC Bach, Ditterdorf and Viotti with the English Haydn Orchestra; Handel, Vivaldi and Porpora Trondheim Barokk, Bach Christmas Oratorio with the Norwegian Wind Ensemble; Handel Solomon as well as JS and CPE Bach programmes with Victoria Baroque Players, British Columbia, Handel Belshazzar at the Valetta Festival and Handel Music for the Royal Fireworks with Arion Baroque Ensemble, Montreal.He has also directed programmes with the Academy of Ancient Music, Academie d’Ambronay, the Mozart Festival Orchestra and St Paul’s Chamber Orchestra.


SURREY BACH
FESTIVAL ORCHESTRA

Sunday 14th July | 7:30pm

St Mary’s Church, Stoke D’Abernon

Principal keyboardist of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and renowned harpsichordist and director Steven Devine conducts the inaugural concert of the Surrey Bach Festival Orchestra.Featuring orchestral players who are members of many of the top period-instrument orchestras in the country including the Academy of Ancient Music, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the English Concert and more, this will be a vivid and resplendent evening of orchestral works by J.S. Bach and his contemporaries.

Contact Us

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Get Involved

Help keep the arts going in your community!

Donate or Become a Funder
We're enormously grateful for the funding we've received so far - but we're still in need of donations. Whether you can donate £10 or £1,000, you'll be helping to launch a new celebration of music and community.

Volunteering
Need volunteering experience, looking for something fun to do this summer, or have time to help with a local arts event? We'd love to have your help! Your duties could involve things like delivering flyers, sticking up posters, helping set up the festival, serving drinks, or helping to clean up.

If you are able to help Surrey Bach Festival in any way, please don't hesitate to get in contact using the form on our Contact Page.