About us

The Orchestra was founded in 1983 by local amateur musicians to explore the repertoire for Chamber orchestra, which is an orchestra comprising strings, double woodwind, horns, trumpets and timpani.

We rehearse fortnightly on Sundays - during the afternoon in the winter months, and the evening during the lighter summer months.  Once a year we try to host a players' day - a chance to try out some new repertoire, and welcome people who'd like to try us out.

Letchworth Sinfonia considers itself an important part of the cultural life of the town and welcomes the interest of music-lovers in the area, as supporters of our concerts and potentially as players.


Rowan Baker


Rowan Baker became conductor of the Letchworth Sinfonia in September 2017.  He grew up in Hertfordshire where he first began to make music, playing cello and tuba. He played with the County Youth Orchestra, and a variety of ensembles through the Mid Herts Music Service.  He gained a first class honours degree from Southampton University in 2011, and a distinction in his conducting postgraduate degree at the Royal College of Music.  Amongst others he has studied with Michael Rose, George Hurst, Paavo and Neeme Järvi, and Marin Allsop.  He has conducted a wide range of orchestras including Luton Symphony Orchestra, Hertfordshire Philharmonic and the de Havilland Philharmonic.  He lives in London working for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful Group. He has also worked as an arranger, transcribe and copyist for London Festival Opera.

Janet Hicks


Janet graduated at the University of Birmingham where she won the Hayward Scholarship for instrumental studies. Her violin teachers included Anne McNaughten and Ernest Element. After settling in Hertfordshire in the late 60s she developed an active career embracing both teaching and playing. Significant positions have been viola player in the McNaughten String Quartet, chamber music tutor at North Herts College and founder member of the Phoenix String Quartet, specifically for the performance of live music in schools. Today she continues to work for the Hertfordshire Music Service, to coach at Benslow, to lead the Hitchin Symphony Orchestra, (a post she has held for over 40 years) and the Letchworth Sinfonia (more than 15 years). She also leads for amateur operatic productions and is a regular member of the Aurelian Ensemble.

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