James Ross studied at London’s Southbank International School and won scholarships to Harrow School in London and Christ Church at Oxford University, where he studied Modern History and Music; his doctorate on French Opera, Politics and the Press was awarded Oxford’s prestigious Sir Donald Tovey Prize. He studied violin, viola and singing, gained extensive orchestral and chamber music experience, and was a 1998 BBC Philharmonic Conducting Competition finalist. Since then he has conducted in nineteen countries in Asia, Europe, Africa and North America. UK performances include at The Royal Festival Hall, Royal Albert Hall, St John’s Smith Square, Symphony Hall Birmingham, state occasions in Westminster Abbey for Queen Elizabeth II, and Oxford’s Sheldonian Theatre, for whose 350th anniversary concert he conducted Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.

In the UK, he is music director of Sidcup Symphony Orchestra, Haslemere Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Welwyn Garden City Orchestra and Chorus and Bridgnorth Sinfonia, and Artistic Advisor of The Commonwealth Resounds. In this role he has conducted The Commonwealth Festival Orchestra for Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings in the UK, Sri Lanka and Malta, also conducting concerts and tours in the UK, Turkey and Uganda with the Purcell and Chetham’s Schools and London music colleges and The Royal Over-Seas League.

He has conducted over 1,000 works including the complete symphonies of Beethoven, Brahms, Dvorak, Mendelssohn, Schumann and Tchaikovsky, operas by Bizet, Britten, Janačék, Mozart, Puccini, Tchaikovsky, Verdi and Wagner, and numerous ballet scores. Singers with whom he has worked include Sir Thomas Allen, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Olga Borodina, Danielle de Niese and UK National Opera Studio members.

As a contemporary music conductor, numerous first performances include collaborations with the City of London Sinfonia and Arts Council, at London’s Saatchi Gallery with Philharmonia Orchestra members, and opera productions for Piccolo Theatre Milan and the US Center for Contemporary Opera in New York.

James Ross also has extensive business experience as director of classical music consultancy Ulysses Arts, which provides strategy advice, due diligence, label services to venues, orchestras, soloists and record companies. Clients include Apple, Deutsche Grammophon, the Berlin Philharmonic, L’Orchestre de Paris, L’Orchestre national de Lille, New York’s 21C Media Group, The Julliard School, Barbican Centre and Afghanistan National Institute of Music.

As a guest speaker, James Ross lectured at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France; he has taught at Oxford University and contributed to books and journals, especially on French music and culture. He has helped raise over £1 million performing for charities, including conducting English National Ballet in aid of Save The Children’s work with refugees from Syria. He is a Fellow of the UK Incorporated Society of Musicians, a US Conductors Guild and League of American Orchestras member.