Singing & Theatre Arts Teacher, Musical Director, Piano Accompanist, Composer
James Hall was born and bred in Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire and now lives in Kingston upon Thames, London.
James’ first steps into the arts were through dancing and being inspired at the age of three by Riverdance and watching films starring Gene Kelley in Singin In The Rain and On The Town. He started dancing at the age of six at the Kimberley School of Dance and stayed until he was eighteen; doing classes in tap, modern, ballet, classical greek and contemporary. During this time he achieved ISTD Intermediate level tap and modern qualifications and competed in local dance festivals appearing in bursaries and achieving “highest boys mark” two years running. He also learned Irish dance with the McaleerField Academy of Dance and took part in the Riverdance 2015 summer school in Dublin. James is an ex scholar of The Louise Brown Scholarship Ballet Centre in York which he attended for nearly four years; receiving tuition from Simon Horrill.
As well as dancing James performed in multiple shows as a child with local amateur dramatic groups, mostly with Scunthorpe Little Theatre Club taking on a huge range of roles including animals! Scraps the dog from Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchet is one of his favourites. He was an original member of their youth drama group Rising Stars and took part in local drama and music festivals. He became one of the leaders of the group in 2012 and worked as their accompanist. Local amateur dramatic societies also gave James the opportunity to take on supporting roles such as musical director and rehearsal pianist.
James was inspired by music during his time at secondary school; Frederick Gough Comprehensive. He started out learning the fife which naturally progressed to the flute and he self taught himself the piano. At school he performed in the Fred Gough Band which toured around local primary schools and he was involved in their international band tour to Belgium. Around this time, James found an interest in accompanying and would often play for school friends in concerts and for GCSE recordings.
Whilst studying in London James has performed with professional and amateur dramatic companies on stage and in film. James’ first show in London as musical director was with Youth Action Theatre in their production of A Slice of Saturday Night in November 2013 at the Hampton Hill Playhouse (now Hampton Hill Theatre). James worked with student theatre company Ropewalk as a composer and musical director on their production Afterglow in summer 2013. This was James’ first original score for theatre and was performed at the International Youth Arts Festival at The Rose Theatre and The Tiffin Boys School Theatre. James has continued as a musical director to work with Youth Action Theatre, Kingston Vale Theatre Group, St Michaels Players, Zodiac Musical Society, Hounslow Light Operatic Society and Teddington Theatre Club. He has also worked for BROS Theatre Company, Cygnet Players, Yellow Rose Productions, Richmond Theatre, The Urdang Academy and is currently working with Theatre Box in Epsom.
In more recent years James has focused on singing teaching and coaching; working with actors and performers in the musical theatre industry. His focus is on ensuring young performing students receive thorough and research based training in how their voices work, how to look after them and primarily access the tools to be able to sing at their best and maintain their voices for the rest of their lives, professional or amateur. James has taught singing at Richmond Theatre, Stagecoach, The Ultimate Voice and currently teaches at Italia Conti Arts Centre.
As a composer he has written many pieces for standard ensembles and solo instruments but also has written an underscore for the play Tom’s Midnight Garden which was performed with Youth Action Theatre in April 2016. Most of James’ compositions can be accessed in the Gallery.
In January 2014 James established his theatre company Off The Couch Productions. The company's first production Coffee Cups was written and directed by James and premiered at Hampton Hill Theatre in April 2014. Coffee Cups ran for three performances and had a sell out audience on closing night. The show is due to make an appearance in some London fringe venues in the not so distant future.