Richard Stamp, the Academy of London's Anglo-American founder and Artistic Director, was born in Evanston, Illinois. He was encouraged to take up conducting professionally by Sir Georg Solti who heard him conduct at Cambridge University. Stamp studied in London with Sir Colin Davis and subsequently at the Musik Hochschule in Vienna, with Hans Swarowsky and the composer Friedrich Neumann.

On returning from Austria, Richard Stamp became assistant conductor of the Royal Ballet, conducting more than sixty performances for the company. On leaving he was awarded a conducting fellowship by the Boston Symphony Orchestra to go to Tanglewood. In the latter 70s, Stamp was active in music education on both sides of the Atlantic, working with orchestras at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, the Chicago Civic Orchestra (the training orchestra of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra) and, finally, for two years as Resident Conductor at the Cleveland Institute of Music.

It was during this time as an orchestral trainer - in particular working alongside principals of the Cleveland Orchestra - that Stamp determined to found a professional orchestra in London based on the concept of string sound he had heard in Austria and the United States. The 1980s were spent single-mindedly pursuing this ambition, with the results that can be heard today in his concerts and award-winning recordings with the Academy of London. Wide recognition has been given to Stamp's outstanding gifts as an orchestral trainer, together with the vitality and depth of his interpretations. "Richard Stamp knows how to make an orchestra play well ... a fine ear, a sweeping beat and a real sense of leadership" (Chicago Sun Times). "An authoritative conductor ... procured renderings of unusual vitality and penetration and kept everything vibrantly alive" (Daily Telegraph). "A sunny, almost Beechamesque quality" (Gramophone). "Frighteningly good in every way, has the personal touch which makes the listener feel that an insight has been gained to the composer's mind" (Classic CD).

In addition to his work with the Academy of London, Richard Stamp has conducted orchestras in the UK, including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and the Bournemouth Sinfonietta, and in Germany, France, Switzerland, Poland, the USA and China. He has broadcast on French, Belgian, Austrian, and American radio, as well as for the BBC. Richard Stamp has recorded for Virgin Classics, ASV and with Ofra Harnoy and the Toronto Chamber Orchestra on the BMG/RCA label.

In 1994 Stamp and the Academy of London were the first British conductor and chamber orchestra to be invited to tour China by the Chinese government and Stamp has since returned as guest conductor of the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphony Orchestras. In recognition of his services to music in Austria in 1996 Stamp was awarded the Grosse Ehrenzeichen des Landes Kärnten and the Austrian government's Ostarrichitaler for services to Austria's Millennium. In the choral field Stamp has conducted most of Austria's leading choirs, including the Vienna Boys Choir, the Vienna Singverein and the Arnold Schönberg Chor.