Ethan Simpson is quickly gaining recognition as an extremely versatile artist in both his “robust baritone voice and compelling stage presence,” (Chicago Tribune). Recent engagements include Jauno in West Side Story with the Philadelphia Orchestra under the baton of Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Schaunard in La bohème with the Martina Arroyo Foundation in New York City, and the title roles of Count di Luna, Rigoletto, Don Giovanni, The Demon and Gianni Schicchi, and Albert in Werther all as a resident artist with the world renowned Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia. Mr. Simpson also recently appeared in the title role of Joseph De Rocher in the critically acclaimed Chicago premiere of Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking. Other operatic roles include Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Guglielmo in Cosi fan tutte, Valentin in Faust and John Brooke in Little Women. In 2014 Mr. Simpson appeared in productions of Le nozze di Figaro, Dead Man Walking, and The Sound of Music with Central City Opera in Colorado. This summer, Mr. Simpson can be seen as Behike in the upcoming North American Premier of Hatuey; A Memory of Fire in collaboration with the prestigious Peak Performance series in Montclair, New Jersey. In addition to operatic engagements, Mr. Simpson will make his professional Hollywood debut in 2018 in the role of César in an upcoming feature film based on Anne Patchett’s New York Times best selling novel Bel Canto alongside Academy Award winner Julianne Moore and Oscar nominee Ken Watanabe directed by Paul Weitz (About a Boy, Mozart in the Jungle).
Mr. Simpson was a 2018 semi-finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, and has garnered numerous awards from Paris Opera’s International Mozart Awards 2017 (third prize and audience choice award), the Lotte Lenya Competition, the Giulio Gari Foundation, the Dallas Opera Competition, the Vero Beach Opera International Vocal Competition, the Bel Canto Foundation, the Southern Illinois Vocal Competition and the Hal Leonard Competition.
Mr. Simpson grew up in Blue Springs, Missouri and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Northwestern University and holds a Master’s in Voice Performance. While at Northwestern University, Mr. Simpson was awarded the coveted Bienen School of Music Eckstein Fellowship and was the dean’s choice to sing for President Barack Obama. Mr. Simpson is currently a third year resident artist at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.