Born in Edinburgh, Sandra Porter studied at the Royal College of Music, London where she was awarded several prestigious scholarships and awards. Her teacher in recent years has been Dame Felicity Palmer.
Sandra initially gained experience on the opera stage performing the roles of Dorabella (Cosi fan tutte), Bianca (The Rape of Lucretia), Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro), Rosina (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Cenerentola (Cenerentola), Carmen (Carmen), Marcellina (premiere of Giles Swayne’s Le nozze di Cherubino, Queen Vaan (Columba by Kenneth Leighton), Maddalena (Rigoletto), Mercedes (Carmen), Suzuki (Madame Butterfly). An accomplished singer and actress and at home in both comic and dramatic roles, Sandra now specializes in particular in character roles and has recently performed Annina (La Traviata), Filipyevna (Eugene Onegin), The Witch (Hansel and Gretel), Berta (Barber of Seville), Juno (Semele), Storge (Jeptha), Mrs McLean (Susannah), Marthe (Faust), Gertrude (Romeo and Juliet), Katisha (The Mikado), Mrs Noah (Noye’s Fludde) for companies including Opera Holland Park, Buxton Festival Opera, English Touring Opera, Iford Arts Festival, Stanley Hall Opera and Co-Opera Co. She has also understudied a number of roels for English National Opera; Martha (Faust), Ericlea (The Return of Ulysses), Marcellina (The Marriage of Figaro), Filipyevna (Eugene Onegin), Swiss Grandmother (The Death of Klinghoffer) and Governess (Queen of Spades).
Sandra began her working life as a song recitalist and chamber soloist appearing with amongst others: The Scottish Sinfonia at the Edinburgh Festival, The Chamber Group of Scotland, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Symphony of Harmony and Invention, International Festival Chorus, Scottish Bach Choir, Sentieri selvaggi, Telemann Ensemble, International Baroque Players, Nonesuch Early Music Ensemble and working with composers and conductors including: James MacMillan, Sally Beamish, Martyn Brabbins, Roger Norrington, Harry Christophers, Roderick Bryden and Wyn Davies. Abroad her concert work has taken her to Beijing, Tokyo, Milan, Germany, China, the Middle and Far East and to France. She worked and performed with the accompanist Malcolm Martineau and in addition to her extensive and varied song repertoire she commissioned, performed and recorded several new works for voice and piano and often broadcast for BBC Radio 3 and Radio Scotland.