The Australian Simon Hewett has established himself at the forefront of the younger generation of conductors. He studied clarinet and conducting at the University of Queensland. After his graduation he was awarded a three-year German Government Scholarship for studies in operatic and symphonic conducting at the Franz Liszt Hochschule für Musik in Weimar in 1998. During his studies in Germany, his work with the Elision Contemporary Music Ensemble led him to important festivals in Australia as well as on tours to Europe and Japan. In 1999 Elision released a CD recording of Richard Barrett's "Opening of the Mouth" (ABC Classics) under Hewett's baton. In 2000 he conducted the premiere of Liza Lim's opera "Moon Spirit Feasting".
From 2002 he worked at the Australian Opera in Sydney, assisting conductors such as Simone Young und Sebastian Weigle on several productions. He made his debut there with Bizet's "Les Pêcheurs du Perles" and was re-invited for operas such as "Tosca", "Turandot" and "Il Barbiere di Sivilglia" and also conducted several performances of the Australian Ballet – "Swan Lake" and "La Fille mal gardée" among others. In concert the young conductor has worked with many important orchestras. In 2004 he was awarded the Hephzibah Tinter Fellowship and the Brian Stacey Award for Young Conductors.
From 2005 to 2008 Simon Hewett assisted Simone Young at the Hamburg State Opera and was Resident Conductor. In Hamburg he conducted a wide operatic repertory, such as "La Bohème", "Don Giovanni" and "Tre Sestri" as well as several of John Neumeier's ballet productions. After conducting the premiere of "Parzival – Episodes and Echoes" in Baden-Baden in 2006 he led the orchestra in performances of "A Cinderella Story", "The Nutcracker" and many others with the HAMBURG BALLETT. In the season 2006/2007 he made his debuts at the Berlin State Opera and at the Berlin Komische Oper. The conductor also returns to the opera in Sydney on a regular basis, recently Otello in 2008.
Earlier in 2009 Simon Hewett accompagnied the company from Hamburg on a successful tour of japan, with Neumeier's "The Little Mermaid" after H. C. Andersen with music by Lera Auerbach. In addition, he conducted several performances of John Neumeier's "Third Sinfony of Gustav Mahler" for a production with the Ballet de l'Opéra National in Paris. Just now, in April, he conducted the revival of Léo Delibes' "Sylvia" in John Neumeier's choreography in Hamburg. In the season 2009/2010 Simon Hewett will conduct performances of "Illusions – like Swan Lake", "The Little Mermaid", "The Nutcracker", "Orpheus", "Sylvia" and the "Nijinsky-Gala XXXVI" on June 27 – the final highlight of the "36th Hamburger Ballett-Tage".