James Bester

James Bester received his Masters Degree in Music from the Royal Academy of Music in London, where he studied under Carole Presland. He also studied there as an undergraduate, obtaining his Bachelors Degree under the acclaimed French pedagogue Pascal Nemirovski.


He started his training in South Africa, and has since his teen years been involved in performances and competitions both nationally and on international stage. Memorable concerts include a solo recital at St. Martin in the Fields in 2011, and collaborations and performances with young composers in New York. Working hard towards his goals as a young pianist, he set out to inspire the same feelings in his pupils, whom he has been teaching since 2006 in and around London.


As an enthusiastic teacher, James has worked with learners ranging from beginners (both children and adults), in preparing them for their music exams, be it at school or as part of the ABRSM examination system.


James is truly proud of his studio of 30 students at present, who all attain excellent progress and marks in examinations. All his students are also happy in providing references to any interested parties.

Having studied at such a highly acclaimed school such as the Royal Academy of Music, James sets out in teaching his pupils that music is a language, and an extraordinary means of communication, whether in an exam or a performance environment. He aims to teach his learners to be forward thinking musicians who are able to communicate their performances through thoughtful expression and sound technical training.

James is also an active performer, with recent concerts given at Burgh House, St. Martin-in-the Fields, and a contemporary music performance in Brooklyn (Galapagos Art Space), and Manhattan (The Cell), New Yorkas part of the DETOUR New Music Ensemble, premiering both ensemble as well as solo works by upcoming American Composers based in New York (Juilliard), and Los Angeles (University of Southern California), as well as recent recitals in Boston and Cape Cod, Massachusetts with American cellist Diana Golden. 


Where did you study?

I studied at the Royal Academy of Music, obtaining my BMus, MMus and LRAM qualifications there. I also hold a DipABRSM in piano performance.

What is your first instrument?

My first instrument is piano, and I also played cello for ten years.

What age did you start?

I started playing piano at age 7.

What is your favourite piece?

I adore almost anything by Ravel, and I love performing and working on Beethoven Sonatas too.