Interdisciplinary composer and life coach, Mattia Maurée ’14 MM creates art that explores perception, sensation, trauma, and resilience. They earned a Master of Music in Composition at New England Conservatory studying with Malcolm Peyton, where John Heiss called their music "bold, adventurous, powerful and elegant."
Mattia’s public-facing art projects and collaborations have received generous support from the Puffin Foundation, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, MASS MoCA, and the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture, and they were a finalist in the Mass Cultural Council 2019 Artistic Fellowships Program in music composition. Collaboration, community, and education are core to Mattia’s work. They have taught songwriting and comics in Boston Public Schools, poetry through Boston's Creative Aging Program, and a workshop on anti-racist co-labor with long-time collaborator Pampi at MASS MoCA.
Mattia is also a fierce advocate for disability justice, trans rights, and trauma recovery through the arts. Their podcast, The Longer Road, supports people with multiple marginalized identities who may have to work harder to overcome societal challenges. Through coaching, Mattia helps neurodivergent people set boundaries, increase a sense of safety, build sustainable habits, and find balance.
Why did you choose NEC?
NEC chose me—it was the only masters program I was accepted into! Fortunately it was my top choice, and I was thrilled at the prospect of studying with NEC's renowned composition faculty.
What are some of your favorite memories from your time at NEC?
One of the stories I tell most often is when the graduate students organized a pub crawl. I was late, so I was running around Jordan Hall trying to find anyone to tell me which bar I should start with. As it turned out, they were all at Uno's across the street. But rather than doing an actual pub crawl, we ended up talking about how we all should be practicing instead of taking a night off. And in the end we all dispersed to go practice—it was pretty funny and typical!
Share a story about one of your favorite faculty or studio instructor.
One of my favorite classes was with Stephen Drury. Once I had a migraine and wore oversized sunglasses during class. Mr. Drury complimented me on my new look because he thought I was trying to look cool… which wasn’t my intention!
Also, I recently learned that I am autistic. There were many instances at NEC when faculty were supportive and understanding when I had sensory processing issues or headaches and needed accommodations. Those small moments of support made NEC a great environment for me.
How have your NEC experiences shaped your artistic approach?
I've always been fascinated by people who are incredibly talented while being balanced and healthy. This has become one of my main life goals, inspired by my classmates.
The incredible skill level at NEC made me think more about specialization and focus as a composer, rather than trying to take everything on. At the same time, I love learning and the pursuit of mastery, so I am constantly having to pull myself back from going down a totally new road when I am distracted by something shiny and interesting.
What have you been up to since graduating from NEC? What projects have you been working on?
Right now I am working as a life coach and I absolutely love it. Not only do I enjoy the work, but it allows me the freedom to work on other projects. I am currently booked with classical commissions through early 2023, including a 20-minute opera. As my interest in writing started to flourish, through publishing poetry and doing a libretto-writing program at Guerilla Opera, I was worried that I was doing "too many things." But my workload feels perfectly balanced now. I have also received several awards and commissions along the way—validation that all my hard work was worth it!
I also have a podcast, The Longer Road, where I support people with multiple marginalized identities who may have to work harder to overcome societal challenges. It all keeps my neurodivergent brain occupied while giving me a lot of control over my schedule.
Share any other stories about what has inspired you at NEC and beyond.
I love being a part of NEC's Mentor Program! It has been incredibly rewarding to connect with a current student who has the same career goals as I do, and to share my experiences with them. The Mentor Program has also helped me reflect and recognize how far I've come. We don't often celebrate our successes enough because we are always focused on the “next thing.”
Do you have any advice for young musicians?
Ask yourself better questions to get your creative juices flowing. For example, rather than asking, "how can I make enough money to support my art," you could ask yourself, "how much do I need to make in three months to support myself during the other nine?"
Learn more about Mattia:
Current Job: Composer, Writer, and Life Coach
Major & Degree: Composition (MM)
Class Year: 2014