He quickly rose to prominence on the international stage, and has conducted numerous orchestras including the St Petersburg Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, Philharmonia Orchestra, Orchestra National du Capitole de Toulouse, WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, Sinfonia Varsovia, City of Birmingham Symphony, Gothenburg Symphony, English Chamber Orchestra, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, RTVE Symphony Orchestra (based in Madrid) and Tonkunstler Orchestra (based in Vienna).
In Japan, he is "permanent conductor” of the Japan Philharmonic, associate conductor of the Sendai Philharmonic and the Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa, and the musical director of the Yokohama Sinfonietta, which he formed while still a student. In August 2012 he conducted the opera Oresteia by Xenakis with the Tokyo Sinfonietta, and replaced Seiji Ozawa, on the latter’s recommendation, to conduct a semi-staged production of Honegger’s “Jeanne d’Arc” with the Saito-Kinen Orchestra. The production transferred to the Philharmonie Hall in Paris with the Orchestre de Paris, and to Monaco with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo. Marion Cotillard played the role of Joan of Arc.
Kazuki Yamada has worked with leading soloists including Emmanuel Ax, Boris Berezovsky, Leon Fleischer, Håkan Hardenberger, Nobuko Imai, Daishin Kashimoto, Daniel Müller-Schott, Xavier de Maistre, Steven Osborne, Vadim Repin, Baiba Skride, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Daniil Trifonov and Alexandre Kniazev. Yamada and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande are releasing a series of three CDs inspired by dance, on the Pentatone label. A disc of works by Glazunov, Kalinnikov and Khatchaturian played by the Czech Philharmonic and conducted by Yamada is due for release with Octavia Records. Previously, on the Fontec label, the conductor made four CDs of vocal works with the Tokyo Philharmonic Chorus, of which he is the conductor in residence.
During the 2015/16 season, Kazuki Yamada returned to work with the Philharmonia Orchestra, and conducted the Orchestre National de France, Tonkünstler-Orchester, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, NHK Symphony, Malaysian Philharmonic and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, touring with the latter in Japan. He also made his debut with Staatskapelle Dresden, Bergen Philharmonic, West Australian Symphony Orchestra and Grand Théâtre de Genève, with an opera. He continued his cycle of Mahler symphonies with the Japan Philharmonic.
Kazuki Yamada is the guest conductor at the Seiji Ozawa International Academy Switzerland. In Seiji Ozawa’s absence, he conducted all students in 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2015.