Welcome to Simpson College Opera

Opera Director Bernard McDonaldSimpson College offers a renowned and unique undergraduate opera program that is fully musically and technically resourced, supported by a professional orchestra, in an intimate, purpose-built theatre.

If you are an aspiring singer, pianist, conductor, stage manager, lighting designer, stage director, set designer, costume designer, or vocal coach, or if you are interested in musical theatre and seek a broad liberal arts education, you can do no better than begin at Simpson College.

Simpson College is the performing home of the Des Moines Metro Opera, with which it enjoys an historic, close partnership. It provides Simpson students with the invaluable opportunity to experience professional opera on their doorstep, and every summer Simpson students serve as interns and production staff in the summer opera festival. Many singers from Simpson have taken part in the DMMO Apprenticeship Program, an opportunity afforded usually to only the most talented graduate students and young professional singers from all over the United States.

All of the voice, coaching, and conducting faculty have professional careers, national and international credentials as performers, and are a close-knit team dedicated to developing the tradition of excellence established over many decades.

Simpson College punches massively above its weight in the number of professional singers, artistic administrators, choral directors, conductors, and music educators it has produced. Come and find out why.

Whether you are a prospective student, parent, teacher, audience member, a newcomer to opera, or a longstanding fan, or one of our outstanding alumni, I would be delighted to hear from you personally.

Bernard McDonald
Director of Opera
G. Dewey and M. Maine Larsen Chair in Opera