UNO’s Heartland Philharmonic performs Annual Haunt-cert this Sunday with New Director

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October 23rd, 2018

DR BROOKS: “Being the new Director of Orchestra’s here at UNO, I knew there was a tradition of this annual Huant-cert, it took me a few months to get used to saying “Huant-cert”, but now I’m used to it so it sounds like a normal thing, a normal word and people look at me strange now.”

That’s Dr. Matthew Brooks, the new Director or Orchestras in UNO’s School of Music. He also leads the Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra and leads them in their annual Halloween concert this Sunday.

DR BROOKS: “You know, I’ve done Halloween concerts before and I didn’t’ want it to be the same old. Since this concert has done this for a number of years, you can only reinvent the wheel so much. So I was trying to look for a theme but I’m not a thematic programmer, I tend to find music that connects with me that fits the general idea and then I start the process.”

Through the magic of his process he came up with the theme of haunting stories.

DR BROOKS: “Were starting with Danse Macabre which will feature our concertmaster, Rachel Neff. After that we are doing a set from Hansel and Gretel. You don’t normally think of it as a haunting story but it’s a witch trying to eat the kids. We are teaming up with UNO Theater. We’re doing a reading interspersed with the Prelude from Hansel and Gretel, the Sandman Aria featuring graduate student, Alexandria Plumb and then also the Witches Ride. Then we have a special piece of music with a movie score like quality that will tie into a reading of Tell Tale Heart that the theater students will do, and finally wrap up with a movement from Symphonie Fantastique.”

Dr. Brooks said there isn’t one specific philosophy he’s taken from, it’s a little bit of everything.

DR BROOKS: “Yeah, we purposely go and study every piece of the orchestra and every movement, motive and phrase but at the end of the day it’s to look at all of those individually and then collectively. Hopefully we are always doing that, not resting on our laurels, we are never too good.”

That’s UNO’s Director of Orchestra’s Dr. Matthew Brooks and this Sunday October 28th he leads the HPO in their annual Haunt-cert.

DR BROOKS: “A lot of Halloween concert tends to be programmatic, that is the purpose to evoke a certain mood. All the pieces can portray a certain mood the audience and whether it’s the exact story the composer intended or some mood of a character, each piece should evoke a certain mood, and that’s another reason it’s really family friendly”

For more information head to music.unomaha.edu

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