David Hahn is a conductor, collaborator, and educator who has dedicated his career to inspiring audiences and musicians alike through his passion for choral music. Hahn has earned a reputation for his innovative programming, powerful interpretations, and commitment to nurturing the next generation of choral artists. As the Paul S. and Jean R. Amos Distinguished Chair in Music and Director of Choral Activities at the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University, Hahn conducts the Schwob Singers, Choral Union, and leads the annual Schwob Choral Invitational which brings over 200 students to campus each year for an inspiring day of singing and performances. Hahn also teaches courses in voice and conducting at the undergraduate and graduate levels and serves as Faculty Advisor to the Black Schwob Society. Prior to joining the faculty at the Schwob School of Music, Hahn served as Visiting Director of Choral Activities at the University of Toledo.
As a dedicated advocate for contemporary choral music, Hahn has made it his mission to introduce innovative and underrepresented works to his ensembles and audiences. Hahn’s commitment to diversity in programming has resulted in collaborations with living composers, as well as the inclusion of works from underrepresented cultures and backgrounds. In 2022, Hahn commissioned a new work titled I Hear Survivors for SATB choir and cello by Pulitzer-Prize finalist, Michael Gilbertson and led a performance of the first multi-sensory work of its kind, The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci by Jocelyn Hagen. Past projects have included David Lang’s The National Anthems, Trevor Weston’s Mary’s Verses, and Kile Smith’s modern setting of The Star-Spangled Banner. In 2018, Hahn received the American Prize Ernst Bacon Award in the College & University division for his performance of John Corigliano‘s Fern Hill with the Eastman Repertory Singers.
Having studied under the tutelage of esteemed orchestral, operatic, and choral conductors, Hahn has developed a deep understanding and love for conducting choral-orchestral repertoire. In 2022-23, Hahn conducted the Levin completion of the Mozart Requiem and served as guest conductor with the Schwob Philharmonic. As Artistic Director of the Orchard Park Chorale, Hahn conducted many notable works with full orchestra including The Rio Grande by Constant Lambert, Toward the Unknown Region by Ralph Vaughan Williams, and In Terra Pax by Gerald Finzi. At the Eastman School of Music, Hahn was the associate conductor of the Graduate Orchestra where he conducted symphonic works by Brahms, Dvorák, Mahler, Strauss, and Stravinsky. In the field of opera, Hahn spent three weeks in the Opera Bootcamp program at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music where he conducted scenes from Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte and Le Nozze di Figaro. Hahn also conducted the 2020 University of Michigan concert performance premiere of William Banfield’s poignant opera, Edmonia.
In addition to his work as a conductor, Hahn is committed to music education and fostering the next generation of choral artists. Hahn previously served as assistant conductor the Michigan Youth Chamber Singers as well as Director of Choral Music at Nichols School in Buffalo, NY where he directed multiple choirs and served as Artistic Director of the Nichols Choral Festival and Invitational. Hahn is in demand as a guest clinician for schools, state literary meets, and community choirs.
Hahn has sung with many distinguished ensembles including the two-time GRAMMY® Award-Winning Ensemble—The Washington Chorus, the GRAMMY® Award-Winning Ensemble—the Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus (as Bass Section Leader), the Chicago Choral Artists, the VOICES chamber choir, and the Eastman-Rochester Chorus (as Ensemble Manager and Bass Section Leader). Hahn has also made operatic appearances, most recently with Buffalo Opera Unlimited.
Hahn holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in conducting from the University of Michigan, the Master of Music degree in conducting from the Eastman School of Music where he was a recipient of the Edith H. Babcock and Herman Genhart choral conducting scholarships, and the Bachelor of Music degree in vocal performance and sacred music with honors from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, IL. Hahn’s major teachers include Eugene Rogers, William Weinert, Brad Lubman, Robert Swensen, Terry Strandt, and Tim Stafford. He has also received mentoring and teaching from Mark Gibson, Victor Yampolsky, David Hayes, Duain Wolfe, Andrew Megill, Lucinda Carver, and Erin Freeman.