Ben Halstead – Resident Conductor

Ben Halstead grew up in Saddleworth, Greater Manchester and started to learn the cornet at the age of 9 through Oldham Borough Music Service. He studied at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama (RWCMD), under Dr Robert Childs, Chris Turner and Tom Hutchinson, and gained a BMus (Hons) in 2015.

Ben has been part of the brass band scene for many years and has previously been a member of the Flowers Band and Desford Colliery Band to name a few. After completing his degree, Ben toured Australia with the Grimethorpe Colliery Band and performed at the Royal Nova Scotia International Tattoo in Canada. His instrumental exploits have seen him perform in some of the world’s greatest concert halls, including; Symphony Hall, The Sage, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, St David’s Hall, The Wales Millennium and The Royal Albert Hall.

Upon completion of his studies at RWCMD, Ben decided to join the British Army as a musician. He then served as a member of both The Band of the Prince of Wales’s Division and British Army Band Tidworth before gaining a position on the highly coveted British Army Bandmaster Course where he graduated in September 2023. Ben has received conducting tuition from some of the most sought-after professors in the United Kingdom; including Mark Herron, Professor John Traill, and Professor Robin Browning. He has travelled extensively due to his occupation, having visited Georgia, Uganda, Pakistan, and Afghanistan amongst others. Ben has been assigned as the Assistant Bandmaster of the Band and Bugles of the Rifles, based in Winchester where he will lead the unit on a variety of engagements in the UK and abroad.

Ben has achieved much success in the early years of conducting. He has been invited to conduct numerous Championship Section Brass Bands within the South of England and Wales and conducted the winning performance at the Midlands Entertainment Championships in 2019. Ben was appointed as the resident conductor of the Salisbury-based, championship section, Woodfalls Band as of September 2023.