James Wyman

Principal Timpani

Timpanist James Wyman has been a BSO member since 2013.
What will the Baltimore Symphony leave behind in its next 100 years?
A legacy of great perseverance, dedication to its community and fantastic recordings.
Who inspires you?
My non-musician inspiration would certainly be my wife, Elizabeth. She inspires me to not only be a better and harder working musician, but a better parent, spouse and person our community.
If you had to do something other than be a Baltimore Symphony Musician, what would you do for a living?
I would love to be a National Park ranger or a state wildlife officer.
Where is your favorite get-away spot or favorite get-away companion?
My favorite getaway spot is Hocking Hills OH. My companion is my wonderful wife Elizabeth. I love renting a cabin for the weekend and spending time hiking and exploring the caves and woods.
What would people be surprised to find out that you like to do?
People may be surprised to find me with my two sons at any local play area or playground playing on the slides or playing hide and seek with them! People may be surprised to find that I like to watch and follow NBA games, history and statistics! I still remember stats from NBA seasons in the early 1990's!
What piece of music do you feel was written for you? What piece of music do you wish you had written?
I feel like Sibelius's Symphony No.1 was written just for me. The way the timpani writing fits my style and my preference is unlike any other symphony in the repertoire! A piece that I wish I had written would be Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier. There is so much emotion and beauty in this singular work and it is such a joy to listen to it.
What or who influenced you to be a professional musician?
I have been and still am inspired by my mentors and previous timpanists who have perfected our craft and have paved the way for timpanists of my generation. Paul Yancich and Cloyd Duff are two very important people who have shaped my playing, not to mention the other dozen teachers I have had the pleasure of working with over the course of my studies.
What do you like to do with your ”me time”?
I love to study recordings, work out, watch my beloved Cleveland Cavaliers!!!, and play some Xbox. (Who says grown-ups can't play video games!!!)
How do you give back to our community?
I participate in both of my son's PTA programs and come into the classroom often to assist. I also teach timpani and percussion lessons to students of all ages.
James is on the percussion faculty at UMBC.