Simon Estes: Arts Leader

Simon Estes is a perfect example of a true Arts Leader. This Iowa native and world-renowned opera singer has established not only a school in South Africa for some of the continent’s poorest children, but also the Simon Estes Iowa Educational Foundation, “a multiracial, nonprofit organization that provides positive minority role model programs and scholarships to students attending Iowa colleges and universities.”

His latest project is the “Wings and Roots” tour, where he’s pledged to present concerts in each of Iowa’s 99 counties.

“I want to share the gift of voice God has given me and give something back. I want to introduce audiences to classical music and a trained voice, and I want to raise funds to provide scholarships for outstanding students. The cost of college is high and many families need help. I know when I was young, I struggled. I scrubbed floors, shined shoes, carried luggage and anything I could do. I want to help young people because I believe in the value and importance of education,” Estes said.

Simon attended our From the Top Show #216 in Ames, Iowa this spring, where he met From the Top alums Caroline Weeks (viola) and Bryanne Presley (obeo), both of whom he ultimately ended up inviting to join him to perform at several concerts this fall! So far Bryanne is scheduled to perform with Simon on October 30 in Vinton, Iowa, and November 13 in Manning, Iowa. ¬†Caroline will be performing with him this December. Stay tuned, as we’ll post more information about those concerts as we get it.

Bryanne on From the Top in Ames, Iowa


Caroline on From the Top in Ames, Iowa

From the Top is taping the next Iowa show in Davenport on October 12 at 8pm. If you’re in the area, come on down and grab a seat in the Adler Theater.¬†Tickets & info here.