Remembering the Opera Years

Tonight as Delanie and I were giving each other foot rubs and watching prime time television, we saw some of the most amazing interpretive Olympic couples ice skating I have ever witnessed.  As I was caught up in the “spirit” of the games,  I found my mind drifting back to a seven year period of time in which I facilitated Opera by Children in my classroom.  I am grateful to have been part of this miracle gifted by Utah State University, Utah Festival Opera (founded by Michael Ballam), and blessed by so many other helpers dedicated to the Arts in our school.  I miss seeing the children’s faces light up at curtain time and witnessing their growth in so many ways that standardized testing can not measure, as they imagined and created their stories, librettos, musical scores, dances, scenery, costumes, and more. Here are some of the scenes and themes my children explored during our seven year run:  1.) an activist classroom lobby for more recess for animal students, 2.) a junkyard clubhouse to safeguard feral raccoons, 3.) a mission to Mars by Secret Agents of Outer Space amid civil war between Freeze-ray Vampires and Lava Monsters, 4.)  an attempt to save a failing Dazzle City Casino from the spell of an evil magician (We were forbidden to include the words “Las Vegas” and “gamble” in the writing and performance. Hmmm. Welcome to YEW-taw!)  5.)  a time warp from a high school homecoming football game into a mysterious land of Wizards and Vikings, 6.) Doping at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio by a vengeful Lance Livestrong  which resulted in a surprised bearded gymnast and a high speed tricycle chase through the audience, 7. Drought, death and  unprecedented change due to railroad expansion and westward disruption of Native ways  and wisdom.  This was the only serious opera  produced in the 7 years. It was the 100 year celebration of our town and school.  The opera explored what it is to lead and what it is to be free.  It was also our last Opera.  Sometimes I wonder if I could do it all again, but I can’t go back. The path moves forward.  Who knows…..maybe it will lead to an Olympic ice oval full of performing children!


About hrobertson2013

“Each man ( and mermaid) will be like a shelter from the wind and a refuge from the storm, like streams of water in the desert and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land”. Isa 32:2 NIV Warning: The author of this blog is not an ordinary individual. Even Mermaids need a rest from all that's real and grown up. Welcome to the wonder of blog. Come be audience to all that's wet and wild in her stories, poems and thoughts. Instructor by day, super hero by night, and mystical mermaid by summer. Whenever she has the fortune of diving into a pond, reservoir, or mountain waterfall, you'll find her there swimming, and singing songs of life.
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