A native of Kent, Ohio, James Ihde began his ballet training at the Dance Institute of the University of Akron, where he studied for eight years. In 1993, he came to Philadelphia for a summer session at The Rock School for Dance Education. Upon completion, he was invited to join Pennsylvania Ballet as an Apprentice for the 1993-1994 Season. In 1995, Mr. Ihde joined the Corps de Ballet and was promoted to Soloist in September 2003.
During the 1996-1997 Season, Mr. Ihde received rave reviews for his featured role in Lar Lubovitch's Waiting for the Sunrise. Since then, he has danced several feature roles in the classical repertoire including Paris in John Cranko's Romeo and Juliet, Ivan in James Kudelka's The Firebird, and the title role in Ben Stevenson's Dracula. In the contemporary repertoire, he has danced leading roles in Paul Taylor's Company B, Jerome Robbins' Interplay, Lar Lubovitch's Concert Six Twenty-Two, Margo Sappington's Rodin, Mis En Vie, Matthew Neenan's Penumbra, Christopher Wheeldon's Polyphonia, George Balanchine's Agon (Pas de Deux), the world premiere of Jorma Elo's Pulcinella, and the title role in Balanchine's Apollo.