James Harp is the Artistic Director of Lyric Opera Baltimore, where he oversees all opera activities at the Modell Lyric Theatre and directs a significant program of education/outreach programs. He holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the Peabody Conservatory of Music. He is the Principal Performance Accompanist and Chorus Master for Baltimore Concert Opera, and is a coach/accompanist with the Wagner Society of Washington, DC. He is organist for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and Cantor (Organist/Choirmaster) at Baltimore’s historic St. Mark’s Lutheran Church.
Successful as a writer of operatic children’s programs, he and his work Puppets & Pagliacci were featured on a PBS documentary, and he is also noted for his revisions and translations of works such as Gianni Schicchi, L'heure Espagnole, and L'elisir D'Amore. He serves on several national advisory boards as a consultant and advocate for arts agencies. He is a judge for the Metropolitan Opera auditions and is a regular adjudicator for many local and national opera and vocal competitions.
Stage Direction credits include La Traviata, Madama Butterfly, Tosca, La Bohème, Die Zauberflöte, Die Fledermaus, The Medium, L'elisir D'amore, L'heure Espagnole, Carmen, and almost all of the Gilbert and Sullivan Repertoire.
He has been featured as soloist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in works ranging from Saint-Saens ORGAN SYMPHONY to Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera. He has appeared as continuo soloist with many local orchestral and choral groups, where his informed and histrionic realizations of baroque figured bass have won acclaim. He has also accompanied such artists as Elizabeth Futral, Stephen Costello, Leontyne Price, Marilyn Horne, Sherrill Milnes, Licia Albanese, Anna Moffo, Chris Merritt, Lucine Amara, and Paul Plishka including performances in Europe and at the Kennedy Center.