Victoria Steinitz studied conducting at the University of Surrey under Sebastian Forbes and Nicholas Conran, who also taught the Feldenkrais Method of movement psychology. As a first-study bassoonist however, it was facing the audience that she became familiar with many great choral and orchestral works, performing in notable venues such as Guildford Cathedral, and ventured off campus to support productions by Guildford Opera, including Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro and Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann.
A graduate of Colne Valley and Essex Youth Orchestras, Victoria has toured to Canada and the US, Sweden, Estonia, Germany, the Czech Republic, Poland, Holland and Italy. She worked for the London Symphony Orchestra for twelve years and, when living in the capital,played with Sinfonia Tamesaandwas a founder member of the UBS Orchestra, performingat St Giles Cripplegate, LSO St Luke’s and the Barbican.
On moving back to Colchester in 2009, Victoria became Conductor of Boxted Methodist Silver Band. Despite coming to brass later than her classical roots – she followed some friends to Boxted at age 13 and ended up playing tenor horn because there were no cornets left for that particular cohort – banding came to the fore and in 2012, whilst on maternity leave following the birth of her daughter Lillian, Victoria was also asked to step into the post of Conductor with Ipswich Over 50s Brass Band.
Widening her circle of banding friends, Victoria quickly found she was assisting, fixing and performing with several local bands, moving between the tenor horn, flugel and cornet, and on occasion conducting 1st Class Brass, Long Melford Silver Band, Stowmarket Concert Band and Suffolk Phoenix Brass. She also became heavily involved in the professional arts scene across Colchester and beyond when, from 2015 to 2018, she was General Manager of local charity Roman River Music. This included a memorable opportunity to work with Kensington Brass, a flexible symphonic brass ensemble who led workshops with local young people and bandsmen, culminating in a performance of Gordon Langford’s New World Fantasy, which Victoria conducted on a specially-built stage in the vertiginous church of St Mary in Stoke by Nayland.
Other recent achievements include leading a group from BMSB who joined other local players to form ‘Anglia Brass’, a massed band that toured the Picardy region of northern France in April 2018. Marking 100 years since the end of the First World War, the tour included a televised performance at the Thiepval Memorial and a joint concert with Orchestre de Cuivres d’Amiens, noteworthy French National Brass Band Champions.
Victoria was invited to become Musical Director of The Colchester Band in September 2018 and is looking forward to getting to know the Band during its busy Autumn season ahead of competing at the Butlin’s Mineworkers Festival in January 2019.