January 9 — January 27, 2019

Matthew Aucoin
Matthew Aucoin, Festival Curator

What is this festival about?

The world is changing at an unprecedented rate. We live in an age of dizzying possibility, of constant transformation and reinvention. The old rules don't seem to apply anymore, but is anyone sure what the new rules are?

Musicians, and other artists, can have an uncanny ability to sense what's just around the corner, or to make sense of a transformation that's underway in our world. Hearing the Future, curated by composer-conductor (and 2018 MacArthur Fellow and Genius Award recipient) Matthew Aucoin, explores and celebrates the power of music and art to give voice to the evolution and revolutions in the world at large.

The festival will shine a spotlight on the music being made today - from composers and performers who are still in high school, to a 90-year-old jazz master. The festival will also explore the way music from the past, from Haydn, Beethoven and Berlioz to the creators of African-American spirituals, engaged with the most urgent issues of their time. We also feature events presented by our partners at San Diego museums, theaters and dance companies.

The San Diego Union-Tribune has just published  a new interview with Festival Curator Matthew Aucoin! A few months ago they ran a major preview story about our "Hearing the Future" Festival!

KPBS has also run a feature about the Festival, including an interview with San Diego Symphony CEO Martha Gilmer.

Venue map

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He Pūtōrino Mākutu (a magic flute): a taonga pūoro puppet opera

Presenting Organization San Diego Guild of Puppetry
Radio Tautitotito
San Diego Symphony

Location Sandbox
325 15th Street
San Diego, CA 92101

JAN 16, 8:00PM | JAN 17, 8:00PM He Pūtōrino Mākutu (a magic flute): a taonga pūoro puppet opera

He Pūtōrino Mākutu (Eine Zauberflöte/A Magic Flute) is a chamber opera that combines two musical traditions from antipodes of the globe: Viennese classicism and taonga pūoro - the instrumental musical heritage of the Maori peoples of Aotearoa New Zealand. Musical borrowings from Mozart, Schubert and Beethoven are reimagined and responded to with original music and a bilingual libretto in Te Reo Māori and German. A trans-Pacific cast of vocalists from Aotearoa and the United States joins forces with San Diego musicians onstage with shadow puppets by the San Diego Guild of Puppetry.

More info


Thank you to our festival partners

  • San Diego Dance Theater
  • Playwrights Project
  • Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego
  • Kallisti
  • James Beauton and Justin Morrison
  • ARTS (A Reason to Survive)
  • Art of Élan
  • American Modern Opera Company
  • Fresh Sound
  • Athenaeum Music & Arts Library
  • Malashock Dance
  • Vanguard Culture