Toria is a director, writer, teacher and producer, who lives with a neurological disability. She was Resident Director at Trinity Laban from 2009 to 2021, and has worked for major opera companies including English Touring Opera and the Royal Opera House. She has written three plays for rural touring, and has worked as a dramaturg supporting other writers and devising companies. An experienced acting teacher, she led the Foundation Acting course at Arts Ed for five years.
In 2018, she co-founded HERA, an intergenerational, intersectional feminist opera company to make and tour inclusive opera by women and other gender minoritised artists. Rejecting genre boundaries and hierarchies, HERA’s varied live and digital shows include both unheard music by female composers of the past, and newly commissioned and co-created work. Touring show ‘Generation’ combines a brand new short opera by Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian with new translations of arias by nine neglected women composers in a show about what different generations of women owe each other. Their recent digital opera, We Ask These Questions of Everybody, a verbatim opera by Toria and composer Amble Skuse performed by an all-disabled ensemble was "astonishing…politically important and an artistic triumph” (The I ★★★★★)
Scheduled for publication in 2022, Hera’s Book of Opera, Volume 1, by Toria Banks is a fascinating and necessary guide to opera by women before 1800.