A day in the life of a professional singer

James Huish
James Huish

Professional singer and Artistic Director James Huish runs the Belfast School of Performing Arts which has a school in Lisburn.

Father of two boys, Toby, 8 and Logan, 4, James is originally from Scunthorpe in North Lincolnshire, where at the age of 15 realised his passion for singing.

He taught children in Performing Arts for a number of years for a leading National children’s theatre school in the UK.

As a vocal/songwriter coach and performance studies coach, James taught and conducted workshops in The Castle Theatre, Northants.

He developed and set up the Broadway School of Performing Arts for children before moving to Northern Ireland and forming the Belfast School of Performing Arts offering a year long round course for children aged from 6-18 years of age.

James is a musical Theatre veteran having performed in Musicals such as West Side Story, Grease and in Chamber Concerts of Miss Saigon and Les Miserables in London’s West End.

‘Every day is busy. I spend my time visiting the different branches of my Performing Arts school including Belfast, Ballymena and Lisburn. The schools run every week during school term on Saturdays.

I set the curriculum and I choose two shows every year for the children to perform as well as organising a summer scheme. On top of this I plan concerts which brings all the schools together.

My role is checking the schools are running okay and everything is on schedule. Each school is diverse an the Lisburn one is relatively new so we are still building it up. Each school has a dance, acting and drama teacher and a centre manager and I will liaise with them regularly.

I could be out and about in high schools giving talks about what I do in school assemblies or giving workshops and directing musicals in local schools too.

I am a full time singer and have a 10-piece band so this keeps me busy at nights. I am also currently involved in helping direct and co-write a musical called the Great Hunger which we hope will be a hit on Broadway.

I am dyslexic and my only way to shine at school was through music and performing on stage. I wanted to set up a performing school which wasn’t based on auditions and doesn’t matter how talented a child is. It is great seeing children’s self esteem flourish. Children aged 3-18 are all welcome to join, for further information please visit www.thebspa.co.uk’