Quinn Gutman is a Jewish nonbinary soprano and composer striving to share stories and experiences through their music.
Their opera, Wanting: 3 Mini Operas about Queer Dating and Relationships, was written out of the desire for the existence of an opera about the queer community, made by the queer community, and for the queer community. All the plot elements were inspired by their own experiences, those of their friends, and from online posts, blogs, vlogs, and podcasts. They're now working on two projects; the first is a song cycle called We Will Outlive Them...Letters to Rivka from Galicia, commissioned by soprano Jessica Bloch, set from letters Bloch's great grandmother received in the US from her family in Galicia in the former Austro-Hungarian Empire during the country's rise of antisemitism before and during the world wars. The other project is Violetta, a reimagining of Verdi's La Traviata, set in New York City in 1989, collaborating with tenor and librettist Leo Balkovetz. In this opera, Violetta is a transwoman singer/songwriter who's HIV positive, and Alfredo is a transman freelance journalist from the Midwest who had run away from his evangelical family. Quinn has also written music for the ensembles Transient Canvas, Quorum Boston, Mivos Quartet, EnsembleNewSRQ, Ari Streisfeld and John Pickford Richards from the JACK Quartet, and SŌ Percussion.
Quinn’s most famous work as a composer-performer is their A Cappella Arias, a collection of song settings from various poets, all sung a cappella. Included in the collection are “The Thing About Cats”, set from John L’Heureux, “Witness”, set from their own poem, “Letter,” set from Amy Lowell and "App-les" set from Kelvyn Konig. In fall 2020, they wrote their first one-person show You Know Who You Are about their experiences coming out as nonbinary.
Quinn Gutman has sung opera, musical theater, contemporary classical music, medieval music, experimental/improvisatory music, and indie folk. In May 2023, Quinn will be singing the role of Anima in Hildegard von Bingen's opera Ordo Virtutum. Quinn also sings repertoire originally written for tenors and baritones up the octave, including “Batter My Heart” from John Adam’s Doctor Atomic, and “Being Alive” from Stephen Sondheim’s Company. In June 2022, they played Mordred in the Lilac Player's production of Lerner and Loewe's Camelot. To them, they should be able to sing any piece they sound good in, no matter what the original fach and octave. In September 2020, they performed their recital Correspondence: An Evening of Influential Letters, with each featured piece set from a real or fictional letter or telling a story. Among these works were Songs from Letters: Calamity Jane to her Daughter Janey by Libby Larson, King Herald’s Saga by Judith Weir, and Divozione by Virgilio Mortari.
Quinn holds a Bachelor of Music in Composition from Oberlin Conservatory of Music where they studied with Lewis Nielson and Josh Levine. They hold a double masters in Vocal Performance and Composition at the Longy School of Music studying composition with Kate Pukinskis, Aaron Helgeson and Amy Beth Kirsten and voice with Corrine Byrne and Jeffrey Gavott.