Mr Simon Deacon

Simon has overseen the development of a performance culture within the Music department and is a founder of NX Records.

Staff details

Mr Simon Deacon


Co-Head of Department, Senior Lecturer. Pathway Convenor for MMus in Popular Music




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Simon has been teaching at Goldsmiths since 2002 and became a permanent member of the teaching staff in 2008. He holds undergraduate degrees in Theatre from Rose Bruford College of Theatre & Performance, Music from Goldsmiths and a Master of Music in Jazz Composition from The Manhattan School of Music, as a Fulbright Scholar.

As Director of Popular Music Performance Simon has overseen the presentation of masterclasses, talks & workshops (including Jessie Ware, Ghostpoet, Katy B, Nigel Goodrich, Mica Levi) and the development of performance culture in popular music in the department. In addition to College based activities, including a regular and successful showcase night at the Students Union, the Goldsmiths Music Collective, collaborations and events have included: Goldsmiths Vocal Ensemble (directed by ESKA) with the Matthew Herbert Big Band at the Royal Festival Hall (for the London Jazz Festival), The Barbican (for the British Council’s 75th birthday), Glastonbury & backing (amongst others) Jessie Ware & Floating Points; Goldsmiths Big String (directed by Julian Ferraretto) with the Neil Cowley Trio at the Barbican (for the London Jazz Festival), Antonio Forccione at the Purcell Room, ESKA (at The Roundhouse).

He has also animated and curated the annual launch of the PureGold (the department’s Summer music festival) at the Southbank Centre and a streamed version, featuring specially commissioned music videos of student’s work.

Simon is one of the founding members and Creative Directors (with Matthew Herbert) of NX Records, a professional independent record label based in the Department of Music, in collaboration with Matthew’s Accidental Records.

Simon is currently joint Head of Department with Dr. Stephen Graham.


Professional activities:

His professional practice covers work in a variety of media, as pianist, composer and arranger, Music & Choral Director, sound-designer and producer, including collaborations with (amongst others): writer/theatre director Neil Bartlett (Pericles for BBC Radio 3, Everybody Loves A Winner), a commission for the Manchester International Festival (with Struan Leslie, then Head of Movement for the Royal Shakespeare Company), Twelfth Night for the RSC, Oliver Twist for The Lyric Hammersmith - remounted for the American Repertory Theatre, Boston, Theatre for a New Audience, New York & Berkeley Repertory Theatre, California, where it won the Bay Area Critics Circle Awards for Best Production 2007.

with director, Struan Leslie (My Case Is Altered University of Illinois/Wilamette Univrsity, English Skies – a staged song cycle of ESKA’s [later, eponymous debut album, nominated for the Mercury Musc Prize in 2015] with 70-piece chorus at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Next Generation – a project for young music-makers & creatives, funded by the National Theatre and The Art of Regeneration, based at The Albany, Deptford.

with New York performance artist, John Kelly and iconic photographer Nan Goldin, in the presentation of her, The Other Side, in the Turbine Hall of Tate Modern, part of UBS Openings; with New York queer performer Justin Vivian Bond, as pianist and Musical Director in London & New York; Measure For Measure with Complicite at the National Theatre.

A recent collaboration is with alum, Mikey Kirkpatrick – Bird Radio, playing at the album launch of Oh, Happy England at King’s Place, at Iklectic, Hoxton Hall and on Resonance FM. Bird Radio’s new project, Lanterns for Men is currently in development.

Simon has taught (variously) at the Liverpool Institute for the Performing Arts, the Peabody Conservatoire of Music, Baltimore, for the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance.