James Nissen is a researcher, teacher and musician. He studied the WOMAD international music festival for his AHRC-funded PhD at the University of Manchester and has also conducted research on topics including music education, the Greek music scene in London and Yiddish music. He has been involved in applied research projects, including working on a project at the BBC on musicians in the Northwest and collaborating with music venue and charity Band on the Wall to help support its education programme and to participate in a Jamaican song revival project.
James teaches in university, school and community contexts on subjects ranging from music cultures to klezmer performance. He is a founding member and the executive secretary of the Music, Education and Social Inclusion ICTM (International Council for Traditional Music) Study Group and has been involved in organising international symposia in London (2017), Beijing (2018) and Puerto Rico (forthcoming).
James is a singer and also plays violin, guitar and piano. He is an active community musician who has performed with choirs, orchestras, pop bands, a klezmer collective, a UK folk ensemble and a samba school and he volunteers as a music facilitator with Music Action International in workshops supporting refugees.