Matt Van  Brink - composer, pianist, lyricist, educator

Balancing a career as a composer, songwriter, educator, and performer, Matt Van Brink is a pluralist who can bridge Kern and counterpoint, Sondheim and serialism. He has composed and arranged over seventy works for a variety of ensembles across many genres and his catalog includes orchestra, chamber, and solo instrumental pieces, choral and vocal compositions, plus musical theater, music for young performers and audiences, and arrangements.

Van Brink heads the Composition & Songwriting department at Concordia Conservatory in Bronxville, N.Y., where he mentors students in their quests to become professional musicians and musical citizens. With his guidance and advocacy, his composition students have been accepted to the country's best conservatories, participated in prestigious summer programs, and received national awards.

Versatile as both a composer and lyricist, commissions range from a duo for Elizabeth Lim-Dutton and Lawrence Dutton, to a piano transcription of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, to works for San Francisco Choral Artists, to a medley of Stephen Foster songs for violinist Lara St. John, and even to quirky projects like polka and bluegrass arrangements of classic wedding music. More than twenty of his works have been published in the United States and Europe by Schott Music and other publishers, fourteen have been recorded on labels such as Albany Records, and more are available on digital platforms. He has received awards and fellowships, including those from the MacDowell Colony and Wurlitzer Foundation, and The University of Southern Mississippi recently presented a portrait concert of his work.

Complementing his work as a writer and educator, Van Brink performs as a pianist, accordionist, and vocalist for concert music, jazz, folk, and other genres, both domestically and internationally. Recent gigs range from shows with singer-songwriter Suzanne Vega to family-friendly concerts of original songs at libraries and schools in Westchester County.

Van Brink's was mentored by luminaries such as pianist Jeremy Denk, composers Lukas Foss, Samuel Adler & John Harbison, and cognitive scientist Douglas Hofstadter. In all of his endeavors, Van Brink is a creative ambassador, embodying the idea that creative projects are worthwhile and all around us.

© 2019