By Shannon Hoyt —

Heavy metal doesn’t always refer to the aggressive rock music that plays on stage or on the radio. What if heavy metal literally meant the elements from the periodic table?


Well, that is exactly what University of Wisconsin–Stout Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities, Jerry Hui, is trying to fuse into his upcoming holiday performance.  


Using a combination of metal, machinery and poetry, the Symphonic Singers and Chamber Choir will be presenting “Heavy Metals and Machinery.”  


“What you are going to hear is not so much of the head banging heavy metal as the title may suggest,” said Hui. “But, all of the text that we sing, would either have something to do with a particular chemical element, most likely a metal of some kind, or the poetry that has to do with the idea of building a machine, or using a machine.”


The choirs will be singing a diverse amount of music, ranging from a comedic composition by Tom Leer, to a slower paced piece by Eric Whitacre.


“If people haven’t experienced Eric Whitacre before, they need to,” said Chamber Choir member and UW–Stout sophomore, Maria Kastello. “He is super modern; he is pushing the limits of what a choir song can be and what a choral composition can be.”


Jerry Hui has been directing concerts at UW–Stout for three years. His ranging ideas have influenced a thematic approach to each choir’s performances.


Hui believes that the arts is often misinterpreted as being within it’s own realm. He claims that it has the ability to branch out to other fields, such as science. “We are not directly learning about science, but we are not completely disconnected,” he said.


“Scientists don’t always need to just live in their own building and in their own labs. There might just be a very beneficial cross-over between fields,” he added.
The concert will take place on Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church. The event will pose as a fundraiser for the programs future trip to China.

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