In 1964, the Scottish Amateur Music Association (SAMA) held its Annual Conference in Dunblane Hydro. Arthur Oldham, the creator of the Edinburgh Festival Chorus and the then Director of Music at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Edinburgh, approached George McVicar, the Secretary of SAMA, and requested that he form a small choir and teach them the notes of a programme of part songs. It was Arthur's intention to use this group of singers to instruct budding conductors in the techniques of choral conducting. George, who was Music Adviser in Stirling County, formed this group of approximately 14 singers from music staff and pupils from local schools.
After the weekend conference, which had been a great success, Arthur Oldham suggested that the choir remain as a chamber choir. He was so impressed with the quality of the singers that he offered them places in the newly formed Edinburgh Festival Chorus without audition! George arranged a rehearsal venue and the choir was duly formed.