Simon Hewett studied clarinet and conducting at The University of Queensland, graduating with First Class Honours and a University Medal. After receiving a German government scholarship, Simon continued his conducting studies at the Hochschule für Musik ‘Franz Liszt’ in Weimar, Germany from 1998 to 2001.
From 2002–03, Simon was a member of Opera Australia’s Young Artists’ Programme and has since returned regularly to Opera Australia as a guest conductor. For his 2012 performances of Salome, Simon won a Green Room Award for ‘Best Performance in Australia of an Opera’.
In 2005, Simon was invited by Simone Young to join the Hamburg State Opera as Resident Conductor and Assistant Music Director. From 2010–2016, he was Principal Conductor of the Stuttgart Opera. After conducting the premiere of John Neumeier’s Parsifal at the Baden Baden Festspielhaus in 2006, Simon was appointed Principal Conductor of the Hamburg Ballet. In addition to regular performances in Hamburg, he has toured with the Hamburg Ballet to the Salzburg Festival and to Australia, the USA, Hong Kong and Japan.
Simon has appeared with the Queensland, Melbourne, Sydney and West Australian Symphony Orchestras and is the Principal Guest Conductor of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. In 2020, Simon moved with his family back to Brisbane where he has taken on the role of Music Director of the Queensland Youth Orchestras Organisation. Under his direction, the Queensland Youth Symphony received a Gold Award from the Online World Youth Orchestras Festival, one of only two such awards worldwide. In 2022, Simon will return to the Vienna State Opera for performances of Onegin.