Chad Hutchinson is an Assistant Professor and the Director of Orchestral Activities at Eastern Michigan University where in addition to conducting the Symphony Orchestra, he teaches courses in conducting, music education and supervises student teachers in the field. Before his appointment in Michigan, Dr. Hutchinson was the Interim Director of Orchestras at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he led the Symphony Orchestra, University Opera productions and taught undergraduate and graduate conducting courses.
For two seasons, Dr. Hutchinson was the Assistant Conductor of the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the South Dakota Symphony Youth Orchestras. During his tenure, he led the SDSO in numerous pops concerts including artists Ben Folds, Michael Cavanaugh, Jeans N’ Classics, and Steve Lippia, implemented the orchestra’s inaugural season of Carnegie Hall’s Link Up program in a partnership with the Sioux Falls Public School District, conducted Family Concerts and led the annual “Christmas on the Prairie” concert in Hoven, SD. Working with students ages 8-18 and conducting three of the four ensembles within the organization, he helped the SDSYO grow to the largest enrollment in the program’s history, gaining over 75 students in two seasons. Committed to new music, each SDSYO ensemble featured a living composer on every concert in the 2016-2017 season. In addition, the Youth Orchestra performed works by and had residencies with John Luther Adams and Theodore Wiprud while also being one of only three youth ensembles in the country to premiere “Dreamtime Ancestors” by Christopher Theofanidis.
As comfortable in the pit as on the stage, Dr. Hutchinson was recently named the 2017-2018 winner of The American Prize in Opera Conducting for his performance of Suor Angelica with University Opera Theatre at the University of Minnesota. He has led productions of La Bohème, Le Nozze di Figaro, Into the Woods, L’incoronazione di Poppea, Susannah, Suor Angelica, Lady in the Dark, A Kurt Weill Revue and The Mikado with University Opera at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, University Opera Theatre at the University of Minnesota, and Morningside College. Into the Woods and L’incoronazione di Poppea with University Opera at UW-Madison both were awarded 1st place in the National Opera Association’s 2018-2019 Production Competition. Other recent honors have included being awarded 2nd place in The American Prize in Orchestral Conducting for his work with the University Symphony Orchestra at The University of Minnesota, 2nd place in The American Prize’s Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award in Orchestral Programming for his work with the South Dakota Symphony Youth Orchestra as well as being named a finalist for the 2017 Pierre Monteux Prize in conducting.
With a long-standing commitment to education, Hutchinson taught orchestra in the public schools for nine years in Williamsville, NY and Sioux Falls, SD with both programs more than doubling in size during his tenure. In South Dakota, the Roosevelt High School Chamber Orchestra was selected to play for the South Dakota Music Educators Convention and in New York, he created a biennial “Night at the Opera” concert where his ensembles performed portions of Don Giovanni and Tosca. He later taught at Northwestern College(IA) and was the Coordinator and Music Director of the Siouxland Youth Orchestras in Sioux City, Iowa. He has served as a guest conductor for numerous orchestras and festivals throughout the Midwest, Montana and New York and has been on the conducting faculty of the International Music Camp for several years. As a conducting fellow, he has been selected to participate in conducting workshops at the Juilliard School, Eastman School of Music, the New England Conservatory of Music, the Richmond Symphony and the Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra.
An Iowa native, Dr. Hutchinson holds conducting degrees from the University of Minnesota and Bowling Green State University and a bachelor’s degree in music education from Morningside College. Away from the university, he enjoys spending time with his family, training for triathlons as well as rooting for the Iowa Hawkeyes and Kansas City Royals.