About Cantata Music Education


Poynton G&S May 2014Cantata Music Education was formed in 2009 by Anne Mitchell and Catherine Silman. Anne and Catherine have worked together in music education for over twenty years and during this time they have run choirs, orchestras, put on fully staged musicals and expanded those skills into the wider community.

In January 2017, Anne left the company and her place has been taken by Pamela Jay. Pam and Catherine, together with Pam’s husband, Nigel, have worked together running Poynton Community Orchestra so Pam was the natural choice to be Annie’s successor. A violinist with the BBC Philharmonic, Pam retired from the BBC in December 2016 to play the piano for Catherine and all the choirs.

Learn more about our fantastic staff below. If you’d like to get in contact with us, please click here.


Meet The Staff


Catherine Silman – ARCM, MISM

Catherine Silman

Catherine Silman (ARCM, MISM) has been involved in music education for nearly thirty years. From a musical family, as a child she took piano, violin, singing lessons, sang in local choirs and participated in a large number of extra-curricular music groups. She graduated from Warwick University having studied music, composition and choir training and has worked in the education sector ever since.

An experienced choral conductor and teacher, she has considerable knowledge in producing a wide variety of musical events from concerts to full-scale productions, as well as teaching private and class music lessons.

As well as running Cantata Music Education, which currently has six community choirs and an orchestra, Catherine also directs music for the church choir at St George’s Church, Poynton and is a long-standing member of Poynton Gilbert & Sullivan Society where she sings with the group for the spring concerts and is MD for the autumn show each year. The Society meets at St Martin’s Church Hall on Wednesdays 8pm—10pm.


Pamela Jay — GRSM, ARMCM

Pamela Jay

Pamela Jay

Pam trained at the Royal Manchester College of Music, achieving GRSM and two ARMCMs before joining the BBC Philharmonic as a violinist after a tour of Denmark with D’Oyly Carte Opera Company.

An experienced performer, Pam has appeared in televised performances as an Accordion soloist with Pavarotti as well as a mandolinist at the London Proms and has also enjoyed many visits to the Far East. In addition to all her music activities Pam is the author of ‘Maestro Matters’, a book describing orchestral life and working relationships with conductors.

Having recently retired from the BBC Philharmonic, Pam is now renewing an interest in the piano and the challenges of choral accompanying.


Anne Mitchell – MISM (Retired)

Anne Mitchell

Annie left Cantata Music Education in December 2016 after eight successful years in partnership with Catherine.

Every-one here at Cantata would like to wish her all the best in her new life and new home up in Scotland.