James was an actor for twelve years and was appearing in Les Miserables at London’s Palace Theatre when he was asked to take over the position of Resident Director in 1996.
Since then he has worked on a variety of productions including a couple of seasons at the West Yorkshire Playhouse as Staff Director, assisting Jude Kelly on a number of projects including the Olivier Award-Winning Singin’ In The Rain which transferred to the National Theatre. On returning to London he became the Resident Director on Cameron Mackintosh’s production of The Witches of Eastwick at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane and directed it’s first foreign production in Melbourne, Australia.
He returned from Australia to take on the position of Associate Director on Les Miserables and oversaw the show’s move from it’s home of many years, the Palace Theatre to the Queen’s Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue. He recently directed a concert version of Les Miserables in Scandinavia and a full scale production in Berlin.
Whilst maintaining his position as Associate Director on Les Miserables, James also worked on Cameron’s new presentation - Mary Poppins – both in Bristol and in London and he is currently Associate Director on that production. He also assisted on the casting for the Broadway production.
Most recently James directed the London production of Dirty Dancing which is playing to full houses at the Aldwych Theatre.