Damon Gupton was appointed the first-ever Principal Guest Conductor of the Cincinnati Pops. A native of Detroit, Michigan, he served as American Conducting Fellow of the Houston Symphony and held the post of assistant conductor of the Kansas City Symphony. His conducting appearances include the Boston Pops, Philadelphia Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Detroit Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Toledo Symphony, Fort Worth Symphony, Florida Orchestra, San Diego Symphony, Long Beach Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Princeton Symphony, Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte Carlo, Chineke!, NHK Orchestra of Tokyo, Orquesta Filarmonica de UNAM, Charlottesville Symphony, Brass Band of Battle Creek, Brevard Music Center, and Sphinx Symphony as part of the 12th annual Sphinx Competition. He led the Sphinx Chamber Orchestra on two national tours with performances at Carnegie Hall, and conducted the finals of the Seventh Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition and the 2021 Classic FM Live at Royal Albert Hall with Chineke!. Other musical collaborations include work with Marcus Miller, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Common, Leslie Odom Jr., Byron Stripling, Tony DeSare, The Midtown Men, Kenn Hicks, Jamie Cullum, and Massamba Diop in Marvel Studio’s Black Panther in Concert.
Gupton has been featured as narrator in many venues including Juilliard Jazz, where he performed Wynton Marsalis’ The Ever Fonky Lowdown, as well as the Colorado Symphony, Grant Park Music Festival, Detroit Symphony, Cincinnati Pops, Grand Teton Music Festival, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Houston Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, Memphis Symphony, and on the Videmus recording Fare Ye Well.
Gupton received his Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Michigan, where he delivered the commencement address to the School of Music, Theatre & Dance in 2015. He studied conducting with David Zinman and Murry Sidlin at the Aspen Music Festival and with Leonard Slatkin at the National Conducting Institute in Washington, D.C. Awards include the Robert J. Harth Conducting Prize and The Aspen Conducting Prize. Gupton is the inaugural recipient of the Emerging Artist Award from the University of Michigan School of Music and Alumni Society, and is a winner of the Third International Eduardo Mata Conducting Competition.
An accomplished actor, Gupton is a graduate of the Drama Division of the Juilliard School. He has had roles in television, film, and on stage. He currently stars in The Big Door Prize for Apple TV. Other series regular roles include The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey starring Samuel L. Jackson, Black Lightning, Criminal Minds, The Player, The Divide, Prime Suspect, Dick Wolf’s Deadline, Strange Brew, and Finkleman, as well as guest star/recurring appearances on Super Pumped, The Comey Rule, Dirty John, Goliath, Bates Motel, The Newsroom, Suits, Empire, Rake, Law & Order, Law & Order Criminal Intent, Conviction, The Unusuals, Hack, Third Watch, and Drift. He appears in Damien Chazelle's Academy Award-winning films Whiplash and LaLa Land, This is Forty, The Last Airbender, Helen at Risk, Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead, Unfaithful, The Loretta Claiborne Story, and Nicki Micheaux’s Summer of Violence.
Stage roles include the Broadway production of Bruce Norris’ Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning Clybourne Park, the Ovation and LA Drama Critic’s Circle Award-winning Ma Rainey's Black Bottom directed by Phylicia Rashad (Mark Taper Forum), Superior Donuts (The Geffen), Christina Anderson’s Inked Baby (Playwrights Horizons), Othello (Heart of America Shakespeare Festival), The Story (Public Theater), Meg’s New Friend (The Production Company), Wendy Wasserstein’s An American Daughter (Arena Stage), True History and Real Adventures (The Vineyard Theatre), and Treason (Perry Street Theatre), as well as the title role in Academy Award-winner Eric Simonson’s Carter’s Way at Kansas City Repertory Theater. He received an AUDELCO nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his work in Clybourne Park.
He is represented by Harden Curtis Kirsten Riley Agency (HCKR), SMS Talent, and Brookside Artist Management.