Music Mosaics to Jazz up November with Original Music by Dr. Michael Hackett & Guests

Editor’s note: The following information was provided by the UW-W College of Arts and Communication, Department of Music

The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Department of Music is excited to announce the final concert of the Music Mosaics series this fall with “Jazz Originals by Michael Hackett & Guests”. All proceeds from the Music Mosaic series go directly towards scholarships for Department of Music students. This performance will take place on Tuesday, November 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the Light Recital Hall. Ticket prices are $14 for general public, $12 for over 65, $7 for individuals under 18 and free for all UW-Whitewater students. Tickets are on sale and can be purchased online at or by calling (262) 472-2222. Masks are required for anyone entering a campus building and each performance in the Light Recital Hall will have a social distance seating option. Do not come to campus if you are ill. For the most up to date campus safety information, visit the Warhawks are Back webpage at the link below.

Jazz up your November with original jazz compositions by Dr. Michael Hackett and special guest artists. Selections also include original compositions by Kenny Dorham, Sam Rivers, and Wayne Shorter. Artists featured in this concert are Michael Hackett, trumpet and flugelhorn, Matthew Sintchak, saxophone, Chris Rottmayer, piano, Bradley Townsend, bass and Devin Drobka, drums.

Michael Hackett is a performer and teacher with a wide variety of credits. Dr. Hackett has performed in some of the most important musical venues in the world, ranging from Lincoln Center, Birdland, and The Apollo Theater in New York City, to the Kennedy Center and Blues Alley in Washington, DC. His playing is featured in numerous commercially available recordings and his own recordings are released on the Summit Records label. Hackett received his Doctorate of Music from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music and is currently serving as Assistant Professor of Jazz and Commercial Music at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

An avid supporter of contemporary music, saxophonist Matthew Sintchak has commissioned and premiered over 100 new works for the instrument. Sintchak enjoys challenging traditional notions of music performance by pushing boundaries of genre, instrumentation, medium, and style. In the genre-stretching, multi-media Visions of America project, Sintchak worked with trombonist Mark Hetzler and photographer Katrin Talbot to combine the live performance of saxophone, trombone, piano, bass and percussion, in an amalgamation of jazz, classical, and contemporary styles with original video and photographic material created and edited by Hetzler and Talbot. More recently, Sintchak formed the Fuse Trio (, a chamber group for saxophone, clarinet, and piano with the goal of commissioning and performing “crossover” jazz/classical works. They have already commissioned/premiered new works by Phil Woods, Paquito D’Rivera, and UW-Whitewater’s own Christian Ellenwood. Sintchak formed the Sonict Duo (, an experimental group that combines saxophone, video, and live electronics with the noted electronic audio-visual performer and composer Jeff Herriott. Drawing on a combination of commissions, existing works, and newly created works by the duo themselves, Sonict creates an entirely new aural and visual space that defies easy categorization. Sintchak has also been a member of other new music groups including Present Music (Milwaukee) and the Intergalactic Contemporary Ensemble (formerly the Minnesota Contemporary Ensemble), which performed at Queen Elizabeth Hall for the London Jazz Festival.

Chris Rottmayer is a jazz pianist, composer, and jazz vibraphonist living in Madison, Wisconsin. Chris has been a freelance jazz pianist since 1990, was a pianist for Walt Disney World from 1999 to 2020, and has released three albums as a leader: Reactive Synthesis (2013), Sunday at Pilars (2019), and So In Love (2020). Chris is currently the Instructor of Jazz Piano at the University of South Florida, where he has taught since 2007, and is pursuing a DMA in Piano Performance at the University of Wisconsin- Madison where he holds a Teaching Assistantship in the Theory department.

Bradley Townsend holds a Master of Music in Improvisation from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor of Music in Performance from the University of Iowa, where he studied with Diana Gannett. Brad teaches string bass, conducts jazz ensemble II, and the Improvisors Orchestra at the University of Wisconsin- Whitewater. In addition to playing with many notable artists, Brad performs with area ensembles such as the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra, Madison Symphony Orchestra, Arp of the Covenant, the Madison Jazz Jam, Night of the Improvisor, Anders Svonoe Double Trio and Executive Tea Set. His recordings have been reviewed in All About Jazz and the All Music Guide.

Devin Drobka, drummer, composer and educator has been playing drums for the past 20 years. Devin is currently one of the most in-demand Performers and Educators in the Midwest. Devin decided to further his education and applied to the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Devin received his BMA in Jazz Drumming Performance from Berklee College of Music in 09’ where he had the chance to study with Terri Lynn Carrington, Bob Tamigni, Skip Hadden, Jamey Haddad, Kenwood Dennard, Jon Hazilla, Ralph Peterson Jr, Ian Froman, and the master drummer Bob Moses. While at Berklee Devin performed with legends of the Jazz world such as Joe Lovano, Jerry Bergonzi, Greg Osby, Cecil McBee, Dave Santoro, Ed Tomassi, and Phil Grenadier.           

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