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Matthew J. Brooks conductor

"Brooks brought the near-capacity audience to its feet in a lasting ovation…the orchestra and chorale had never sounded better." (Rappahannock Record)

"I am highly confident that the partnerships Dr. Brooks has established between the medical community and the UNO School of Music will continue to improve the well-being of faculty, staff and students, reduce burnout and enhance the experiences of so many of our patients. [His] gifts have brought music to so many and has had a positive impact on all of us." (Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, M.D., UNMC Today)

Biography

Matthew J. Brooks is an academic conductor who is noted for his ability to engage and connect with students, musicians, and audiences of all ages. A dedicated music educator, Dr. Brooks is equally at home on the podium and in the classroom, bringing a unique blend of humor, sensitivity, and leadership to each class or rehearsal.

Dr. Brooks is Assistant Professor and Director of Orchestral Activities in Music & Medicine at University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) where he teaches graduate orchestral conducting and undergraduate music theory in the School of Music. As part of a collaboration between the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and the UNO School of Music, Dr. Brooks was critical in creating the Nebraska Medical Orchestra in 2018, for which he is the founding music director and conductor. He is a courtesy faculty member in the UNMC College of Medicine and serves on the UNO Medical Humanities faculty. From 2018-2020, he was the Director of Orchestras, leading UNO's Heartland Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestra. In his current, refined role, he will continue to work with the UNO Orchestras, but have greater opportunity to continue to develop more academic, musical, and research collaborations with faculty, staff, and students at UNMC/Nebraska Medicine and UNO as part of the developing Music & Medicine program.

Dr. Brooks previously served on the music faculties of Shasta College, Mary Baldwin University, Bridgewater College, and University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Highlights from his academic conducting include leading the James Madison University Orchestras in a number of regular performances, including annual concerts as part of Carnegie Hall’s Link Up program. As the associate conductor of the UNLV Symphony, he was involved in collaborations with Samuel Ramey, Frank Huang, Edgar Meyer, and Peter Schickele. During this time he was invited to conduct the orchestra for the 2003 and 2004 Nevada Artist-Entertainer Hall of Fame ceremonies honoring George Sidney and Tony Curtis, respectively.

Dr. Brooks maintains an active schedule as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator working with musicians and ensembles both here and abroad. Recently, he guest conducted an Omaha Symphony Music Mentors program, and numerous middle school and high school honor orchestras. He has presented at state, national, and international conferences on topics ranging from conducting pedagogy to medical humanities, and is currently engaged in research related to music and wellness with colleagues from UNMC. Dr. Brooks has recently co-founded the National Association of Medical Orchestras with colleagues from around the country who are dedicated to building greater community and shared resources among the nearly 30 medical orchestras across the U.S.A. He is the Assistant Editor for the College Orchestra Directors’ Association (CODA) Journal and Editor for the Nebraska Chapter of American String Teachers Association. He also holds affiliations with National Association for Music Education (NAfME), Nebraska Music Education Association (NMEA), American String Teachers’ Association (ASTA), National Organization for Arts in Health (NOAH), and Pi Kappa Lambda -- the National Music Honor Society.

Dr. Brooks holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education, a Master of Music degree in Orchestral Conducting, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Conducting, Pedagogy, and Literature.

Dr. Matthew Brooks, ASTA National Conference (2020)
Schedule

Upcoming Engagements:

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many upcoming engagements have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.

Past Engagements:

  • May 6, 2020 Nebraska Medical Orchestra, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Center Concert Hall - CANCELLED
  • April 28, 2020 UNO Orchestras Concert, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Center Concert Hall - CANCELLED
  • April 17, 2020 Nebraska Medical Orchestra/UNO Chamber Orchestra Collaborative Concert, feat. Lynn Chang, violin and Lisa Wong MD, viola, Buffett Cancer Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center) - CANCELLED
  • Mar. 24, 2020 Council Bluffs All-City High School Orchestra Festival, Iowa Western Community College Arts Center - CANCELLED
  • Mar. 20, 2020 UNO Orchestras Run-Out Concerts at area High Schools (Millard Public Schools, Omaha Public Schools, Lincoln Public Schools) - CANCELLED
  • Mar. 11, 2020 UNO Chamber Orchestra Outreach Concert, Buffett Cancer Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Mar. 6, 2020 Presenter, American String Teachers Association National Conference, Orlando, FL
  • Mar. 3, 2020 "Music of Remembrance: 75 Years Later," Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Center Concert Hall
  • Feb. 21, 2020, Presenter, California All-State Music Education Conference, Fresno, CA
  • Jan. 27, 2020 All-Millard Orchestra Festival, Ralston Arena, Ralston, NE
  • Jan. 26, 2020 BOCH Festival, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • Dec 18, 2019 Nebraska Medical Orchestra Holiday Concert, Durham Outpatient Center Atrium (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Dec. 10, 2019 UNO Orchestras Winter Concert, feat. Heartland Philharmonic and UNO Chamber Orchestra, Strauss Performing Arts Concert Hall
  • Dec. 6, 2019 UNO Chamber Orchestra Outreach Concert, Buffett Cancer Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Dec. 4, 2019 Sound Health collaboration between UNO and Millard North H.S. Orchestra, Buffett Cancer Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Nov. 22, 2019 Presenter, Nebraska Music Education Association State Conference (University of Nebraska at Lincoln)
  • Nov. 19, 2019 UNO Student Concert Competition, Recital Hall, Strauss Performing Arts Center
  • Nov. 3, 2019 UNO Chamber Orchestra, Gallery 1516, Leavenworth Ave, Omaha, NE
  • Oct. 15, 2019 "Night of French Romantics," Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Concert Hall
  • Aug. 21, 2019 Nebraska Medical Orchestra, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Concert Hall
  • June 5, 2019 Teaching Strings for the Non-String Player, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Center
  • May 11, 2019 NE ASTA Young Orchestra Festival, Omaha, NE
  • May 1, 2019 Nebraska Medical Orchestra, Truhlsen Events Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Apr. 18, 2019 International Concert Series, feat. Omaha Symphony and Heartland Philharmonic, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • Apr. 12-13, 2019 UNO Opera Workshop, The Magic Flute, Gross Catholic High School, Bellevue, NE
  • Apr. 9, 2019 Nebraska Medical Orchestra, Buffett Cancer Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Feb. 19, 2019 Heartland Philharmonic & Friends, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Strauss Performing Arts Center Concert Hall
  • Feb. 15, 2019 Nebraska Medical Orchestra, Well-Being Symposium, Scott Conference Center, Omaha, NE
  • Feb. 8, 2019 Loja Symphony Orchestra, Loja, Ecuador
  • Jan. 27, 2019 BOCH Festival, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • Dec. 5, 2018 Nebraska Medical Orchestra Inaugural Concert, Durham Outpatient Center Atrium (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Dec. 4, 2018 UNO Orchestras Concert, feat. Heartland Philharmonic and UNO Chamber Orchestra, First United Methodist Church of Omaha
  • Nov. 8, 2018 UNO Chamber Orchestra Outreach Concert, Buffett Cancer Center (University of Nebraska Medical Center)
  • Oct. 28, 2018 Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra's Family-Friendly "Haunt-cert", University of Nebraska at Omaha
Videos