James Conrad Smith
holds two degrees in vocal performance: a B.M. from Montclair State University (Montclair, NJ) and an M.M. from the Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University (Bloomintgton, IN). Since 2017, he has shifted his focus towards musical theatre and he has performed and directed across the country in both musical theatre and light opera.
For a full list of performance credits, you can click the Download Full Resume button or scroll below for a select list.
As stage director, James has enjoyed working across a wide spectrum of ages and genres: he founded the Young Artists' Initiative in 2013 and directed The Pirates of Penzance and Don Giovanni (2014). In 2016 and '18, he was the stage director for Shrek The Musical Jr. and Seussical Jr. at a local children's theater camp (ages 9-14). When he was with the Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre in 2017, James was a scene director for children and teens in their age-respective "Rising Star" camps associated with the festival. In 2019 he was invited to be the resident stage director for New Jersey Vocal Arts Collaborative and their inaugural production of Le nozze di Figaro for emerging opera artists. In 2020, he helped organize N.J.V.A.C.'s summer virtual summit in which he offered masterclasses and seminars on acting for the operatic stage.
The shutdown of theaters - and theatre in general - due to the pandemic has forced many companies to adventure into the virtual unknown: In the Fall of 2020, James joined Chicago's Transgressive Theatre-Opera as a video designer utilizing the Adobe Creative Suite to conjure a Handel obscurity, Beauty's Truth, into existence with artists across the country.
Location: NJ / NYC
Union Status: EMC, AGMA
Weight: 165 lbs.
Eye Color: Hazel
Hair Color: Brown
extends up to C6
Audio from the premier performance of "Reflection: Innocent Thoughts About Peace" at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall in March 2014. MSU Vocal Accord, Heather J. Buchanan conductor, Steven Ryan piano
Aside from theater, James is a private voice teacher, substitute teacher (NJ certified K-12), and church cantor. He has also found a niche in both calligraphy and composition/orchestration (Sibelius > Finale... #sorrynotsorry). In 2013, his piece "Reflection: Innocent Thoughts About Peace" won the inaugural Cali Choral Composition Competition (Montclair State University) adjudicated by Morten Laurdisen. "Reflection" premiered at Carnegie Hall in March 2014 presented by MSU's Vocal Accord under the baton of Heather J. Buchanan.
Paramount among his many hobbies, James has been an avid Titanic historian since kindergarten having devoured all things Titanic he can find: films, books, music, models, food, museums, etc. This, in union with his love for the Harry Potter book series, has also made him a passionate Anglophile - the outlet for which he turns to the likes of Downton Abbey, The Great British Bake Off, and all things UK found on the BBC or PBS.
The day after Halloween, you can normally find James beginning to decorate for Christmas: another childhood obsession that has grown throughout the years. Unsurprisingly, a dream role of his is Buddy in Elf the musical.
Other hobbies include: cooking, baking, hiking, and being in nature.
NEWSIES (2019-20) at the White Plains Performing Arts Center
From L-R: James Conrad Smith, Mark Bradley Miller, Jamie Zeidman, Chris McHugh
Sierra Repertory Theatre | CAMELOT
White Plains Performing Arts Center | NEWSIES
Seitz / Pulitzer Understudy
Oregon Cabaret Theatre | SWEEENEY TODD
The Princeton Festival | SHE LOVES ME
Alvin Ailey CitiGroup Theatre | MY PRINCESS DIANA: A NEW MUSICAL
Prince Charles -- Benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS
Downtown Cabaret Theatre | LEGALLY BLONDE
Warner Huntington III
LEGALLY BLONDE (2018) at the Downtown Cabaret Theatre
Also featured: Monica Brown as Elle Woods
Feinstein's 54/Below | WHAT DO CRITICS KNOW?
staged reading, new musical
White Plains Performing Arts Center | THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME
Fr. Dupin / Official
Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre | THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME
Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre | The USIC MAN
Rhino Theatre | BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
THE DAUGHTER OF THE REGIMENT (2018) with the
LIGHT OPERA OF NEW JERSEY
Also featured: Hanne Ladefoged-Dollase, Marquise de Berkenfield
Light Opera of New Jersey | DAUGHTER OF THE REGIRMENT
Light Opera of New Jersey | PATTERMANIA!
Patter Soloist, Gilbert & Sullivan musical revue
Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre | THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE
Major-General Stanley (Cover)
Young Artists' Initiative | DON GIOVANNI
Young Artists' Initiative | THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE
Blooming Voce Summer Workshop | COSI FAN TUTTE
Opera Theatre of Montclair | DIE ZAUBERFLOTE
Re-Imagining Opera for Kids (R.O.K.) | THE MAGIC FLUTE
Papageno / Sarastro
M.M. Vocal Performance | Indiana University | Tim Noble, Terea Kubiak
B.M. Vocal Performance | Montclair State University | Peter R. Gillis
VOICE: Peter van Derick (current)
COACHES: Peter Leigh-Nilsen, Mary Pinto, Walter Huff
Licensed (NJ) Driver
Music: sight reading, composing, orchestration, piano
Falsetto (think Tiny Tim - up to C6)
Accents: British RP, French, German, Italian, Scottish, Russian