James Herstatt is currently a member of the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra. He received his early musical training in Connecticut, USA and completed a Bachelor of Music degree at Purchase College, State University of New York (SUNY) and a Master of Music degree at the Juilliard School in New York. His principal teachers include Misha Amory, Hsin-Yun Huang and Maria Lambros.
Upon graduation James was appointed to the position of co-principal violist of the newly formed Hyogo Performing Arts Center Orchestra in Japan where he worked from 2005-2007. He has worked regularly with other top ensembles in Japan including the KIOI Sinfonietta and has performed as guest principal viola with Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa and The Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra.
James came to Norway in 2007 as acting assistant principal viola of the Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra. He held the position of acting (substitute) co-principal viola of the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra in 2008 and briefly joined the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra before returning to Stavanger Symphony Orchestra in 2009.
James has performed at numerous musical festivals including Verbier (Switzerland), Norfolk (Yale University, USA), Domaine Forget (Canada), Spoleto (Italy), Viola Space and Music Masters Course (Japan) and has performed frequently with the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players in New York. He has recently performed as a substitute violist with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra. James teaches viola at Stavanger Katedral Skole.