Discovered, aged 18, working alongside legendary vocal coach Mary Hammond, as a repetiteur for Sir Cameron Mackintosh’s original production of Miss Saigon at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London, Simon was invited to be a part of the original production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Sunset Boulevard both at the Adelphi Theatre, London, and it’s European premier in Germany. He made his conducting début in this production, aged 20, as the youngest assistant conductor in musical theatre.
Simon went on to work in the original productions of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, The Best of Times with Jerry Herman, Chicago, Charles Aznavour’s Lautrec, Les Miserables, Martin Guerre, On Your Toes starring Adam Cooper, The Phantom of the Opera, Hal Prince’s revival of Showboat, and The Woman In White.
Simon conducted performances of Acorn Antiques-The Musical starring Victoria Wood & Julie Walters (Theatre Royal, Haymarket, London), End of the Rainbow starring Tracie Bennett (Trafalgar Studios, London), Les Miserables (1st UK tour), A Little Night Music (Haymarket, Leicester), and Oliver! starring Linzi Hateley & Sally Ann Triplett (Haymarket, Leicester).
He was Len Cariou’s vocal coach when Mr Cariou recreated his original title role for the concert performance of Sweeney Todd at the Royal Festival Hall as part of Stephen Sondheim’s 70th birthday celebrations. Simon also worked with the revival casts of the Donmar Warehouse productions of Merrily We Roll Along and Company for the Sondheim at 80 series, directed by Rob Ashford & Jamie Lloyd, respectively. For Sondheim’s 85th birthday celebrations, Simon performed in the orchestra (at the piano) at Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London. He was also featured as a soloist, accompanying Millicent Martin.
As Music Supervisor and/or Music Director, he has lead productions of A Grand Night For Singing (Byre, St Andrews), Elegies For Angels, Punks and Raging Queens (Jermyn Street, London, and tour), Legally Blonde – the musical (UK tour 2011), Marry Me A Little (Et-cetera, London), Richard O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show starring David Bedella (West End & UK tours 2006-10), Ruthless! (Arts, London), Silk Stockings – part of the Lost Musicals season (Lilian Baylis, Sadler’s Wells, London), David Leveaux’s Sinatra (UK tour), Monty Python’s Spamalot starring Marcus Brigstocke & Jodie Prenger (UK tour 2010/11), Spamilton (Menier Chocolate Factory, London), Sweet Charity (Donmar Warehouse, London), Victoria Wood’s Talent (Menier Chocolate Factory, London), The Boyfriend (Menier Chocolate Factory, London), The Last 5 Years (Pump House, Watford), and West Side Story (50th Anniversary UK tour).
In concert, Simon has been Conductor/Pianist for a host of stars, including Scott Alan, David Bedella, Stephanie J Block, Hal Cazalet, Lorna Dallas, Sophie-Louise Dann, Cynthia Erivo, Maria Friedman, Haydyn Gwynne, Ramin Karimloo, Andrew Lippa, Lorna Luft, Millicent Martin, Sally Mayes, Liz Robertson, and Monty Python.
As well as conducting his own orchestra in venues such as IndigO2, The Brewery, & Hilton Hotel Park Lane (all London), Simon conducted the Orchestra of Contemporary Music of ERT (Athens), performing a concert series with Ramin Karimloo, Stephen Rahman-Hughes & Simon Bailey, and featuring on Dancing On Ice on Greek national television. Also, the Scottish Pops Orchestra with Susan Boyle, Christina Bianco, Lee Mead & Jai McDowall (2017), Kerry Ellis, Norman Bowman, Tom Urie & Saskia Eng (2018) at the Glamis Prom (Glamis Castle, Scotland). He made his classical debut at Glamis conducting Holst, Barry & Elgar.
In summer 2014, he played solo/featured piano in front of 20,000 people a night at the O2, London in Monty Python Live! (Almost). The last night was also broadcast live, around the world, on television and in cinemas. Simon is also featured on the DVD.
Other television appearances include Gloria Hunniford’s Open House (CH5) and The Paul O’Grady Show (ITV). Simon was an audition panelist for Jane McDonald’s Star For A Night (BBC1).
Simon is also an accomplished singer, and has performed with his musicians at many venues throughout the UK, and around the world. His début solo album, The Courage of a Dreamer, was released in October 2015.
In demand as an educator, Simon has led masterclasses and one-to-one sessions at the following top conservatoires in the UK:-
The Royal Academy of Music, London
The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London
Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, London
The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama/The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow
London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, London
As well as coaching and mentoring in private practice since 1994