Australian conductor Simon Hewett made his Royal Ballet debut in the 2016/17 Season conducting Anastasia and returned in the 2017/18 Season to conduct Sylvia and in the 2019/20 Season for The Sleeping Beauty. He is Principal Conductor of Stuttgart Opera and of Hamburg Ballet.
Hewett studied clarinet and conducting at the University of Queensland and aged 19 became the youngest ever finalist in the ABC Young Performers Award. He went on to further studies at the Franz Liszt Hochschule für Musik, Weimar, and 2002–03 was a member of Opera Australia’s Young Artist Program. He made his debut at Sydney Opera House in 2003 conducting Les Pêcheurs de perles and has since returned regularly, conducting operas including Il barbiere di Siviglia, Tosca, Turandot, Otello, Aida, Così fan tutte, Macbeth and Salome. In 2005 Hewett joined Hamburg State Opera as Resident Conductor and Assistant Music Director and has since conducted more than two hundred Hamburg performances in opera and ballet. He made his debut with Stuttgart Opera in 2010 with Der fliegende Holländer and was subsequently appointed Principal Conductor. Hewett made his debut with Hamburg Ballet in 2006 conducting John Neumeier’s Parzifal in Baden-Baden and has since worked regularly with the company, including on tour to the USA, Japan and at the Salzburg Festival. In recent seasons he has conducted Giselle for the Australian Ballet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Paris Opera Ballet, Peer Gynt and Coppélia with the Vienna State Opera Ballet. Future projects with Hamburg Ballet include the premiere of The Glass Menagerie, choreographed by John Neumeier, and Christopher Wheeldon’s The Winter’s Tale.
Hewett’s many concert appearances include engagements with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra and West Australian Symphony Orchestra. He has worked regularly with the Elision Contemporary Music Ensemble since 1996, in performances including the world premieres of Richard Barrett’s Opening of the Mouth (recorded for CD) and Liza Lim’s opera Moon Spirit Feasting.