After his studies at the Yonsei University College of Music, the young Korean bass-baritone Kihwan Sim was accepted into the “Hochschule für Musik und Theater” in Hamburg to study with professor Geert Smits.
Kihwan Sim has won prizes at several acclaimed international singing competitions such as the 1st Prize at the International Mirjam Helin Singing Competition in Finland, the 2nd Prize at the Neue Stimmen competition in Germany (both in 2009), the 2nd Prize at the “Paris International Opera Competition” in 2010 and the 1st Prize at the International Long-Thibaud-Crespin Competition in 2011 in France.
Kihwan Sim made his first appearance on a European stage in 2010, singing Figaro in Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro at Staatstheater Darmstadt and gave his role debut as Masetto (Don Giovanni) at the prestigious Savonlinna Opera Festival in 2011, alongside Carlo Colombara.
After a successful season 2011/12 in the opera studio of the Oper Frankfurt, he was asked to join their soloist ensemble in autumn 2012. His first main roles there included the Duke of Albany in Aribert Reimann's Lear, Colline in La Bohème, Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro and, more recently, Talbot (Maria Stuarda), Count Rodolfo (La Sonnambula), Procida (Vespri Siciliani), Gottardo (La gazza ladra), Raimondo (Lucia di Lammermoor) and the title role in Verdi’s Oberto.
This season he adds Nick Shadow (The Rake’s Progress), Don Ruy Gomez de Silva (Ernani) and Escamillo (Carmen) to his repertoire.
In addition to his busy schedule in Frankfurt, Kihwan Sim has also appeared in guest performances as Procida at Opéra de Nice and Colline at Oper Köln, shortly followed by his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in the same role in January 2016.
He participated in recordings of Wagner’s Das Liebesverbot and Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos, both on Oehms Classics label, and was featured in Rolando Villazon’s television series Stars of Tomorrow, broadcast on ARTE.