James Judd (conductor)
James Judd (born 30 October 1949, Hertfordshire) is a British conductor. He is Music Director of the Israel Symphony Orchestra Rishon LeZion, one of the leading musical organizations in Israel. He is Music Director designate of the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he will begin with their 69th season in 2017.
Judd was an assistant conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra, and served as associate music director of the European Union Youth Orchestra Judd made his U.S. opera debut in 1988 conducting Don Giovanni for the Florida Grand Opera. Judd was the last full-time Music Director of the Florida Philharmonic, from 1987 to 2001. Judd served as music director of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO), the first NZSO conductor with that title, from 1999 to 2007. He conducted several recordings with the NZSO for the Naxos label, and led the NZSO in its first-ever appearance at The Proms in August 2005. Judd now holds the title of Music Director Emeritus of the NZSO.
In 2013 Judd was appointed Music Director of The Little Orchestra Society, a sixty-six-year-old institution based in New York.
Judd is the founder and current Artistic Director of Miami Music Project, a non profit organization which provides music education to children inspirated on El Sistema tested model. The Miami Music Project uses music as an instrument for social transformation, empowering children to acquire values and achieve their full potential, positively affecting their society through the study and performance of music.
Judd and his wife Valerie, a former member of the New World Symphony Orchestra, have a daughter.