James Ham studied conducting at the St Petersburg Conservatory. Recent and future performances include concerts with the Magdeburgische Philharmonie, Neubrandenburger Philharmonie, Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie, Brandenburger Symphoniker, Ensemble Modern Akademie and education concerts with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
He was Conducting Fellow at the Lucerne Festival Academy for 2016 and held the Charles Mackerras Junior Conducting Fellowship at Trinity Laban Conservatoire from 2013-15. From 2013-14, he was Conducting Fellow with Birmingham Royal Ballet during which time he led several performances in Birmingham and on tour. He is currently Principal Conductor of the London Orchestra Project, a chamber orchestra which he co-founded along with Stephen Bryant, concertmaster of the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
Since 2016, James has been mentored by Sakari Oramo and has assisted him on a number of projects with the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Other conductors he has assisted include Karel Mark Chichon, Garry Walker, Martin André and Kristjan Järvi. He has studied in international masterclasses with Sir Colin Davis, Alan Gilbert, Susanna Mälkki and Martyn Brabbins, conducting orchestras such as the London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Scottish Chamber Orchestra in the process. Other orchestras James has conducted include the Bochum Symphoniker, Staatsoper Cottbus, Jena Philharmonic, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, Orquestra do Algarve, Lucerne Festival Strings and Hong Kong Philharmonic. Recent opera performances include A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Il Tabarro and Le Nozze di Figaro. James was also assistant conductor on English Touring Opera’s L’Assedio di Calais.
In 2013, James was awarded a BBC Performing Arts Fund Music Fellowship. He is currently a Help Musicians UK supported artist and has also received awards from the Tillett Trust.