Matthew Aucoin (b. 1990) is a composer, conductor, poet, and pianist. Aucoin’s next opera has been commissioned by the new works program of the Metropolitan Opera/Lincoln Center Theater. A 2012 graduate of Harvard College (summa cum laude), Aucoin is currently the Solti Conducting Apprentice of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, where he made his conducting debut last February; he has also served as an Assistant Conductor at the Metropolitan Opera.
Aucoin’s third opera, Crossing, will premiere at the American Repertory Theater in May, directed by Diane Paulus. His fourth, Second Nature, an opera for young people commissioned by Lyric Opera of Chicago, premieres in Chicago in August. Recent and upcoming performances of Aucoin’s orchestral and chamber works include performances by the Zürich Tonhalle Orchestra, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, violinist Jennifer Koh, pianist Benjamin Hochman, countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, the SOLI Chamber Ensemble, the Gramercy Trio, violinist Keir GoGwilt, and pianist George Fu. Aucoin studied composition with Robert Beaser at Juilliard, where he received a graduate diploma. He is Composer-in-Residence at the Peabody Essex Museum.
In the 2013-14 season, in addition to his CSO debut, Aucoin made conducting debuts with Juilliard Opera (Eugene Onegin), the Rome Opera Orchestra, and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago (in a public rehearsal featuring cellist Yo-Yo Ma), while also serving as a cover conductor at the Metropolitan Opera (The Nose) and the Los Angeles Philharmonic (Così fan Tutte).
An accomplished poet, critic, and essayist, Aucoin’s poems and essays have appeared in The Boston Globe, The Yale Review, The Harvard Advocate, The Colorado Review, and Plain China; his advisor at Harvard was the poet Jorie Graham. He has served as guest lecturer on music and literature at the New York Shakespeare Society and New York University’s Casa Italiana, and has hosted classical music radio programs for New York’s WQXR.
photo credit: Social Palates