David Hanlon is a composer, conductor, and pianist praised by Maestro Patrick Summers as “one of the major compositional voices of the young generation.” At Houston Grand Opera, Hanlon recently conducted the premiere of his second chamber opera After the Storm, created with librettist Stephanie Fleischmann and director Matthew Ozawa. The Houston Chronicle lauded the score as “haunting” and “stirringly successful.” He made his Carnegie Hall composer debut in soprano Melody Moore’s recital last May. Other recent works include his Texanische Liebeslieder, written with Kathleen Kelly about German immigration to Texas, and premiered at the Butler Center for Opera at University of Texas at Austin; and his chamber piece commissioned by HGO, The Ninth November I Was Hiding, about his grandfather's arrest during Kristallnacht. This summer, Hanlon will conduct the premiere of his and Kelly's new madcap children's opera Listen, Wilhelmina! at Wolf Trap Opera.
Hanlon conducted the world premiere of El Pasado Nunca Se Termina at Lyric Opera of Chicago, followed by performances at San Diego Opera and HGO. He was also music director for the world premiere and recording of Cruzar la Cara de la Luna, and led its revivals in Houston, Chicago, San Diego, Arizona, and Fort Worth Opera. A frequent guest of Houston Grand Opera, Hanlon’s numerous HGO credits include conducting the premieres of his opera Past the Checkpoints about undocumented immigrants, Gregory Spears' The Bricklayer, and Jack Perla's River of Light. He assisted on numerous productions, including the premieres of Spears' O Columbia, Iain Bell's A Christmas Carol, André Previn's Brief Encounter and Christopher Theofanidis' The Refuge in addition to productions of Lohengrin, Tosca, and A Midsummer’s Night Dream.
Hanlon served as Lorin Maazel’s assistant conductor for the Castleton Festival, where he conducted orchestral works, earning praise from the Washington Post for his interpretive skills and “precise baton.” Hanlon also prepared La Fanciulla del West for performances in Castleton and Spain. He is a former Adler Fellow with San Francisco Opera. At SFO, he conducted the premiere of Jack Perla’s Love/Hate and assisted on operas including Nixon in China, Siegfried, Don Giovanni, and the premiere of Heart of a Soldier.
David is an alumnus of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, and a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music and Wesleyan University. He lives in Washington D.C. with his wife and two daughters.