|Simon Tran is a recent transplant from the Pacific Northwest. The son of Vietnamese immigrants, Simon grew up in a unique Vietnamese household in a predominantly white town. Despite never having the chance to do a ton of performing arts in his childhood, he was lucky that his family supported his creative endeavors in small but impactful ways, through occasional art classes, piano lessons, and finally when Simon played the flute throughout high school and in marching band. These experiences fueled his creative ambition and love of the arts in subtle but very drastic ways.
In college, Simon directed his attention to the University of Washington’s School of Drama to pursue his lifelong ambition to do theatre and be an actor. His favorite productions include Yellow Face by David Henry Hwang, Red Earth by Mark Jenkins, and People Sitting in Darkness by Clarence Coo. However, Simon began to develop his passion for arts leadership, community building, and inclusion within the arts as well. Some of his most cherished experiences include being elected as a representative of the BA Council, a student liaison group for the School of Drama, being a Community Engagement Intern at KCTS 9 (PBS’s Seattle station), as a Development Intern at Seattle Arts & Lectures, and as an Emerging Arts Leader at the Seattle Art Museum. From dabbling in a variety of arts and non-profit organizations, Simon knows that he is passionate about making a lifelong impact in the arts. Simon also has a committed interest in social justice. After creating a social justice centered sketch comedy group in college, Simon traveled to Peru on a study abroad to learn and engage in art politics and activism. Afterwards, he embarked on two Civil Rights Pilgrimages to the Deep South through the UW Department of Communication to learn about the history of the civil rights movement, as well as the growing racial and social injustices in the US. From these two life-changing and privileged experiences, Simon hopes to bridge together communities through intentional programming, equitable practices centered around community and inclusion, and access in the arts for the marginalized and underrepresented groups.
Simon is honored to be a fellow of Chicago Sinfonietta’s 17-18 Project Inclusion Administrative Freeman Fellowship. He is excited to work in such a vibrant, transparent, and compassionate organization that brings innovation and impact to Chicago audiences. He wants to continue his path in the arts as a leader, producer, and advocate for those around him, and he is very hopeful that Chicago Sinfonietta will allow him to do just that.