Simon Bailey

Simon Bailey


Representation: General Management

Photo: Angelika Tippmann


Having sung for several seasons in the solo ensemble for Oper Frankfurt, Simon is now gaining an increasing number of guest appearances at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Theater Basel, Staatstheater Stuttgart, De Vlaamse Opera and at the Glyndebourne and Gstaad Festivals. Excelling as a singer/actor Simon has great success in a variety of roles ranging from buffo through to the more dramatic bass-baritone repertoire such as Jochanaan and Klingsor. Simon also sings regularly on the concert platform throughout Germany, where he is based, and has also guested with Nagoya Philharmonic (Japan) and with BBC Symphony Orchestra.


Full Biography

Simon Bailey has received much praise for his interpretations of a diverse and eclectic range of over 100 principal roles and repertoire. A choral scholarship at Clare College, Cambridge preceded postgraduate study at the RNCM Manchester as a Peter Moores Foundation scholar, and at the Accademia del Teatro alla Scala in Milan.

In 2002 Simon was invited by incoming Intendant, Bernd Loebe, to join the company of the Oper Frankfurt where he remained until 2015. In 2005 won first prize in the Internazionale Concorso `Musica Sacra` in Rome. Simon has since developed a highly successful career on both the operatic and concert stages, in demand with leading opera houses and orchestras throughout Europe.

Engagements in 2018/2019 include Kutuzov War & Peace for Welsh National Opera, Kelvin in Dai Fujikura’s Solaris at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, Japan, Noam Sheriff’s Revival of the Dead in Berlin, Shishkov From House of the Dead for WNO at the Brno Festival, Hänsel und Gretel and Budivoj Dalibor in Frankfurt, Counsel for the Plaintiff Trial by Jury for the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (John Wilson), Dinosaurus Magnus in Borboudakis’ Z at the Munich Festival and War & Peace for WNO at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.  Subsequent engagements include Aristaeus/The Myth/Charon in the new production of The Mask of Orpheus for English National Opera.

Recent engagements include Nicanor/Satan in David Felicien’s Herculanum for Wexford Festival Opera, Bach Weihnachtsoratorium in Gießen, Wetzlar and Frankfurt, The Kingdom in Bad Homburg, Köln and Bonn, his role debut as Jochanaan Salome for Oper Stuttgart and Adam Ochsenschwanz in Krenek’s Schwergewicht for Oper Frankfurt.  Highlights in the 2017/18 season included Shaklovity Khovanshchina and Shishkov From the House of the Dead for Welsh National Opera, Peter Hänsel und Gretel in Stuttgart, the Italian première of Alisdair Nicolson’s I, Pilgrim in Rome, Alfonso Cosi fan tutte for Oper Frankfurt, Mizoguchi in Mayazumi’s Kinkakuji for Opéra National du Rhin, Strasbourg, Redburn Billy Budd in Frankfurt and further performances of Der Freischütz in Stuttgart.

Highlights in 2015/16 included his role debut as Kaspar Der Freischütz for Oper Stuttgart, Gunther Götterdämmerung in the Oper Frankfurt Ring cycle; a return to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Sirocco in Chabrier´s L´étoile; reprising the roles of Figaro Le nozze di Figaro and Achilla Giulio Cesare in Frankfurt. Simon also appeared as Kaspar Der Freischütz with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment at the Royal Festival Hall, and as a last-minute replacement for Oper Frankfurt as Fernando Villabella in La gazza ladra, learning the role overnight, and in Stuttgart as four villains Les contes d´Hoffmann.

Further stage appearances have included his debut as the four villains Les contes d´Hoffmann with Oper Basel; Peter Hänsel und Gretel in the new Keith Warner production at Oper Frankfurt; reprising the role of Leporello Don Giovanni for his debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and with Oper Frankfurt; Gelone L´orontea with Ivor Bolton in Frankfurt; Klingsor Parsifal and Don Magnifico Cenerentola in Frankfurt. Bailey ended the season as Leporello once more, for the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad, Switzerland alongside Erwin Schrott and Veronique Gens.  Simon was also to be seen in the title role in Mozart´s Le nozze di Figaro at Teatro alla Scala; Méphistophélès in Terry Gilliam’s production of Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust in Antwerp; Achilla in Giulio Cesare in Frankfurt and Lille; Don Bartolo Il barbiere di Siviglia and Procolo Le convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali at Teatro alla Scala; Redburn Billy Budd at Oper Frankfurt; Don Basilio Il barbiere di Siviglia in Beijing; Truffaldino Ariadne auf Naxos at the Theater an der Wien; Zuniga Carmen for the Glyndebourne Festival.

Previous and future appearances on the concert platform include Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the Tampere Filharmonia in Finland; Handel’s Messiah with the Royal Society at the Royal Albert Hall; Mendelssohn Paulus and Handel Jephtha in Maulbronn; Handel Saul at the Kölner Philharmonie; Haydn Die Schöpfung in Dublin; Gurnemanz Parsifal in Bad Homburg and Wiesbaden; Sulpice La fille du Regiment and David L´amico Fritz in Moscow; Mendelssohn Elias in Giessen and Wetzlar. A keen recitalist, Bailey has recently performed Schubert´s Schwanengesang in Mainz, Cambridge and Monmouth.

Artist Website:

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to make sure you receive the most up to date version.  Email: Elin Jones



Smetana in Frankfurt

February 20th, 2019

Simon Bailey takes a leading role in Smetana’s Dalibor at Oper Frankfurt

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From the House of the Dead

November 27th, 2018

Hazard Chase artists repeat their roles at this year’s Brno Festival

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‘Tis the Season

November 26th, 2018

HC artists’ concert performances this festive period

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Tolstoy’s epic at Welsh National Opera

September 7th, 2018

Hazard Chase artists take major roles in War & Peace

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2018 International Opera Awards

April 10th, 2018

Rediscovered Work of the Year  Krenek: Der Diktator; Schwergewicht, Oder die Ehre der Nation;  Das Geheime Königreich

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Mayazumi – KINKAKUJI, Opéra National du Rhin, Strasbourg

“The drama is centred on Mizoguchi, as previously mentioned, assumed by the magnificent performance of Simon Bailey. Both complex and confused, violent and powerless, this character requires the contradictory facets of character, and voice, in which the British baritone succeeds admirably.”, Victoria Okada (March’18)

“And with Simon Bailey, who until 2015 was in the Frankfurt Opera ensemble, we have a singer actor who commanded the undivided attention of the audience…..Even more admirable is Bailey’s command of the text as if it were his mother tongue”
Frankfurt Allgemeine, Lotte Thaler (March’18)

´In the overwhelming role of Mizoguchi, Simon Bailey carries the evening on his shoulders, almost constantly on stage, without ever allowing the tortured and conflicted nature of the character to afflict his voice´, Laurent Bury (March’18)

“In the role of Mizoguchi, Simon Bailey brings clarity with his sonorous, contoured bass-baritone and his excellent clarity of text is evident: “Kinkakuji must burn!” (March’18)

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Mussorgsky – KHOVANSHCHINA, Welsh National Opera

“In a company debut, Simon Bailey as Shaklovity was both stylishly and authoritatively drawn and his reflection on the fate of the Russian nation was sung with much feeling”
Opera Magazine, Rian Evans (Dec’17)

“On a stage packed with riveting characterisations and eye-catching cameos, Robert Hayward’s ruthless Khovansky is immense, Mark Le Brocq is excellent as the weaselly Golitsyn, and Simon Bailey musters huge emotions in Shaklovity’s anguished lament for Russia’s woes.”
The Times. Richard Morrison (26 Sept’17)

“Robert Hayward’s Ivan is the big vocal presence, but it is the dignified authority of Miklós  Sebestyén’s performance as the believers’ leader, Dosifei, that helps carry the evening, and Simon Bailey is similarly imposing as Shaklovity”
The Guardian, Rian Evans (Oct’17)

Janacek – FROM THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD, Welsh National Opera

“Simon Bailey’s Shishkov effortlessly held the attention”
Opera Magazine, Rian Evans (Dec’17)

“But every singer here pushes themselves to the utmost in portrayals of great force, notably Alan Oke’s Skuratov, Mark Le Brocq’s Luka Kuzmich and Simon Bailey’s Shishkov”
The Guardian, Rian Evans (9 Oct ’17)

“…as the murderers Skuratov and Shishkov Alan Oke and Simon Bailey both give gripping accounts of their lengthy narrations”
The Telegraph, Rupert Christiansen (Oct’17)

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David – HERCULANUM, Wexford Festival Opera

“Simon Bailey did a fine job, firstly as the villainous proconsul, Nicanor, and then as Satan, particularly in Act IV as he frees the slaves from their fetters singing the technically fiendish chromatic scales to great effect.”
Bachtrack, Andrew Larkin (27 Oct’16)

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Mendelssohn – ELIJAH, Stadttheater Giessen

“Particularly noteworthy is the internationally sought after bass-baritone Simon Bailey, who has appeared in the opera houses of Frankfurt, Vienna and Glyndebourne, and at La Scala, Milan, who shone in the role of the jealous Prophet Elijah with a sovereign, gripping interpretation….. As the protagonist Elijah, Simon Bailey fulfilled this task with vocal brilliance and agility. He clearly, concisely and powerfully let the angry prophet rage in ´Is not his word like a fire´, before portraying the prophet´s pain and resignation in the aria “It is enough!” with infinite tenderness.”
Gießener Anzeiger (June 2016)

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Weber – DER FREISCHÜTZ, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (Royal Festival Hall)

“The remainder of the cast was never less than serviceable, and with a few real standout performances. The best of these was Simon Bailey as Kaspar. The dark tone of his voice is ideal for the part, and although he has a tendency to ham up the menacing stage presence, especially the evil laugh, it all served to inject sorely needed drama to the proceedings. The Wolf’s Glen scene was the highlight of the performance, partly because Pountney finally found a way to make his Minimalist conception deliver, but also because it was dominated by Bailey’s Kaspar and Tomlinson’s Samiel”
The Arts Desk, Gavin Dixon (8 June 2016)

“The outstanding male singing and characterisation came from Simon Bailey in the role of Kaspar. This had a lived-in quality to it from a singer who was completely comfortable with all its demands. The black quality to his voice, Iago-like in its insinuation, was always at the service of the music, and in his key Act I aria the absolute steadiness in his deepest register when he reached “Nichts kann dich retten vom tiefen Fall” was most impressive.”
Bachtrack, Alexander Hall (8 June 2016)

“I should imagine they could hear Simon Bailey’s quite superb Kaspar on the other side of the river. I’d never heard him before last year, when he sang a gloriously full-bodied and secure Leporello at Covent Garden … He seems to have made his career primarily in Frankfurt thus far; but it’s high time he – like Ventris – came home (ever assuming he wants to, of course) not least because he has the dramatic chops to be as frightening in this as he was funny in the Mozart, and can sing properly too. More, please.”
Opera Britannia, Stephen Jay-Taylor

“Simon Bailey was his [Max’s] nemesis Kaspar and with an OTT demonic laugh he would have chewed the scenery had there been any scenery to chew. In the devilish goings-on of the Wolf’s Glen he was at his best and brought a much needed dramatic frisson to the proceedings.”
Seen and Heard International, Jim Pritchard

“Simon Bailey stood out as an intense and imposing Kaspar, every consonant and sibilant telling – his voice has a striking sinewy quality allowing him to present a more complex and chilling character than the usual inky-black bass-baritones, and he carried ‘Wolf’s Glen’ from a dramatic perspective and with intensity.
Classical Source, Alexander Campbell (June 2016)

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Discography & Repertoire



Live recording from Oper Frankfurt with Eva-Maria Westbroek (Minnie), Carlo Ventre (Dick), Ashley Holland (Rance) and Simon Bailey (Sonora).  Conducted by Sebastian Weigle

OEHMS (2014)

Artist Manager

John McHugh (Cambridge)
01223 706024

Associate Artist Manager

Elin Jones (Cambridge)
01223 706026