Originally from Trowbridge, Wiltshire, Katherine is a graduate of the GRNCM/MusB 'Joint Course', run between the Royal Northern College of Music and the University of Manchester, where she studied violin with Julia Hanson and conducting with Robert Guy. She graduated from the University of Manchester with a first-class honours degree in July 2020 and was awarded the GRNCM diploma in July 2021.
Through her work as a conductor, Katherine aims to cultivate a stimulating musical environment which inspires musicians to perform with commitment and energy, and therefore create engaging performances that have a powerful impact on audiences. Having trained as an orchestral violinist and chamber musician, she believes it is important as a conductor to treat all music making as a collaborative process, where everyone’s
contributions are valued and musical risk taking is encouraged.
In July 2021, Katherine made her professional conducting debut at the Buxton International Festival, where she conducted three performances of Jonathan Dove's community opera 'The Enchanted Pig', working alongside a cast and creative team of fellow students and alumni from the University of Manchester. Following this, she was selected to participate in a masterclass at the Royal Opera House, working on excerpts from Mozart's 'Le Nozze di Figaro'. She has also worked as an assistant conductor with Heritage Opera (‘Cosi Fan Tutte’, June 2019) and the West of England Youth Orchestra (January 2019), and participated in masterclasses with the BBC Philharmonic (September 2019) and the Dartington International Summer School (August 2023). Conductors she has attended masterclasses with include Jonathan Mann, Alice Farnham, Sian Edwards, Jessica Cottis, Mark Heron and Clark Rundell.
Katherine enjoys working with student and amateur ensembles and her experience ranges from symphonic repertoire to wind orchestras and chamber choirs. She was musical director of the Crosby Capriol Singers for three years, before taking up the post of principal conductor with the Huddersfield Philharmonic Orchestra in May 2022. She also works regularly as a guest conductor with groups including the Cheltenham Chamber Orchestra and Orchestra of Square Chapel in Halifax. Katherine is the founder and principal conductor of the Manchester Philharmonic Orchestra, a dynamic new amateur orchestra based in south Manchester.
- Adams: Short Ride in a Fast Machine
- Beethoven: Symphony no.2, Egmont Overture, Fidelio Overture
- Berlioz: Rob Roy Overture, Les Nuits d'Ete
- Bizet: Symphony in C
- Borodin: Polovtsian Dances
- Brahms: Variations on a theme by Joseph Haydn, Tragic Overture
- Britten: Simple Symphony
- Bruch: Violin Concerto no.1
- Copland: Appalachian Spring, Quiet City, Clarinet Concerto
- Debussy (Busser): Petite Suite
- Dvorak: Symphony no.9
- Faure: Pelleas et Melisande Suite
- Gershwin: An American in Paris
- Grieg: Peer Gynt Suite no.1
- Humperdinck: Hansel and Gretel Overture
- Mendelssohn: Hebrides Overture, Scottish Symphony
- Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante for Winds, Magic Flute Overture, Symphonies 29, 35, 38, 41, Piano Concerto no.24
- Rachmaninov: Symphonic Dances, Piano Concerto no.2
- Ravel: Pavane
- Schubert: Symphony no.2, Italian Overture D590
- Schumann: Symphony no.3
- Sibelius: Finlandia
- Johann Strauss: Die Fledermaus Overture, selection of marches and polkas
- Richard Strauss: Symphony no.2
- Tchaikovsky: Symphonies 5, 6
- Mozart: Cosi Fan Tutte (assistant for Heritage Opera, 2019)
- Jonathan Dove: The Enchanted Pig (University of Manchester Opera, 2020, and Buxton International Festival, 2021)
- Handel: Messiah (excerpts)
- Haydn: St. Nicholas Mass, The Creation
- Elgar: Te Deum and Benedictus
- Britten: 5 Flower Songs
- Ives: Psalm 90
Katherine offers private tuition in violin, piano and music theory.
Her approach to teaching is flexible and she will adapt the style and pace of the lessons to suit individual students' needs. She aims to give students a thorough technical grounding and to explore a wide variety of repertoire, using creative methods to develop a range of musicianship skills alongside technique. She also believes it is important for students to share their progress and successes with others, either through taking graded exams or informal performances opportunities. Through one-on-one tuition, she will work with each student to ensure they find the process of learning an instrument enjoyable and rewarding.
Katherine works as a teacher for MAPAS (Music and Performing Arts Salford), delivering 1-1, small group and whole class tuition across the borough.
Photography and copyright: Heinz Donnelly Schmidt. Please seek permission before copying or using any photos.