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University Public Relations
Pete Simpson Jr. - 1993
Cast member, New York City production of Blue Man Group
Grandson of former Wyoming Governor Milward Simpson and a member of a family that has always been interested in theater, Pete Simpson Jr. began his performance career by participating in the Casper Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps as a drummer for eight years.
After completing a degree in English and theatre at UW, Simpson earned a master of fine arts in acting from the Denver Center Theatre Company's National Theatre Conservatory in 1996.
Immediately after his graduation, Simpson was hired as the newest addition to Blue Man Group, an avant garde-based ensemble that has grown to become a national and international sensation since its New York debut in 1991. Since then, Mr. Simpson has performed, trained, directed or organized for Blue Man Group for over eleven years in their Boston, New York, Chicago, Amsterdam (NL), Oberhausen (DE), Berlin (DE), and Stuttgart (DE) companies. Among many other contributions to the Blue Man Group project, Pete has appeared with the Blue Man on several international TV programs (in addition to Jay Leno and Craig Kilbourne in the U.S.) Pete has also toured with Blue Man internationally with such artists as David Bowie, Moby and Alicia Keyes, and has contributed music to Blue Man's "Audio" and "Complex" CD's , as well as to the soundtrack to the animated feature, "Robots."
In addition to Blue Man, he has also been screening original video work and performing stand-up at Caroline's on Broadway and other venues in New York. Simpson is also a veteran of such regional theaters as Williamstown Theater Festival, the Denver Center Theater, and others. He has also performed in New York and toured internationally with New York experimental theater luminaries Richard Foreman, Richard Maxwell, Young Jean Lee and the Wooster Group (opposite Willem Dafoe in "North Atlantic"). He has worked as a musical arranger and choreographer for Darko Tresnjak in productions for the Blue Light Theater Company, Westport Country Playhouse, and others. Pete has also appeared in roles on TV's Law and Order and Conan O'Brien.
As a percussionist, Simpson was involved in UW's percussion and symphonic band ensembles as well as The Colorado Wind Ensemble for many years and has conducted marching percussion music clinics for several high schools in the U.S. He also co-founded the New York-based band, The Petersons, who have been joined on stage by a number of wonderful artists (Robert Sean Leonard, James Naughton, Mike Doughty and Paul Newman among others).
He is married to Israeli-American costume designer, Naama Greenfield-Simpson, herself the daughter of notable Israeli painter, Yitzhak Greenfield.
Photo courtesy of UWyo magazine