James Topp studied with Hugh Seenan and Jeff Bryant at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. He went on to pursue a highly varied freelance career working with many of the major UK orchestras as well as playing in the West End and the recording studio. He has been Principal Horn of the Worcestershire-based English Symphony Orchestra since 2004 and, in 2017, James was appointed to the position of Principal Horn in The Kidderminster Festival Orchestra.
Solo appearances include Britten's Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings with the ESO and with Trafalgar Sinfonia at St-Martin-in-the-fields, as well as chamber appearances with Fine Arts Brass Ensemble and the Allegri Quartet.
James holds teaching posistions in several schools in the Worcestershire area and beyond, and is very active in youth and amateur music - making as a conductor, arranger and ensemble and orchestral coach.