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Hailing from Manchester, James Holt grew up performing with the Stockport Schools Youth Brass Bands winning several National Youth Championships and Entertainment titles. James received his BA (hons) degree at the University of Salford under the likes of David King, Roy Newsome and Peter Graham receiving instrumental tuition from Peter Christian and Billy Millar. As a performer James has played with Leyland, Besses O’ Th’ Barn, BT, Milnrow, VBS Poynton and Besses Boys’ Band. James first began conducting with the Stockport Schools Brass Bands leading them to several contest victories, he undertook the role of MD of the Besses Boys’ Band in 2005 and has led the band from the 4th to 2ndsection achieving National Final qualification on 4 occasions. As a conductor James is regularly in demand and has worked with bands at all levels throughout the UK. James is currently the chair of the Brass Band Conductors Association (BBCA) and continues to lead on projects/initiatives and networking for conductors. James has a passion for music education and obtained a PGCE from Manchester Metropolitan University and is currently Head of the Expressive Arts at a high school in Bury.