USU Opera Theatre
The USU Opera Theatre offers students the opportunity to participate in a fully-staged opera or musical every year under the direction of Prof. Dallas Heaton. Focusing on repertoire in English, undergraduates are able to concentrate on the fundamentals of stagecraft - the art of telling a story through sight and song. Professional guest stage directors are brought in from across the country and around the world to give students an authentic experience and further preparation for a career as a performer or teacher of opera.
Utah State’s Opera Theatre has proven to be an excellent starting place for young singers, many of whom have gone on to further study at some of the nation's finest graduate schools and conservatories and then on to enjoy an accomplished careers with prominent companies around the world.
In addition to full productions, students also have the opportunity to prepare roles and selected scenes through a yearly Opera Scenes program tailored to individual voices. Through close collaboration with voice professors, students are able to acquire a comprehensive set of necessary musical, technical, and acting skills that can serve as a foundation for continued growth. Opera scholarships are also available, providing additional performing opportunities as part of the Marie Eccles Caine-Russell Family Opera Outreach Quartet.
Although the USU Opera Theatre is primarily an ensemble for Vocal Performance majors, all interested students are welcome to audition. Please contact Prof. Dallas Heaton for more information on how to be involved!
-The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee by William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin, November 22-23, 2019 at 7:30 in the Caine Lyric Theatre (28 W Center, Logan). Six children enter their county spelling bee but only one will come out victorious! Some sexual content and profanity. Purchase tickets here.
-Violet’s Journey, arranged by Prof. Dallas Heaton, November 23, 2019 at 2:00 in the Caine Lyric Theatre (28 W Center, Logan). A young woman goes on a journey of self-discovery and self-acceptance. This production is intended for audiences of all ages and ability levels, with special invitations extended to audience members who are not normally able to attend live theatre! Free and not ticketed. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with requests for special seating or accommodation!
Past productions of the USU Opera Theatre include:
-Mainstage performance of Mozart’s The Magic Flute on April 2-4, 2020 at 7:30 in the Morgan Theatre. Guest direction by USU alumna and soprano Jamilyn Manning-White as part of the USU Year of the Woman initiative. Sung in German with English dialogue and subtitles. Purchase tickets here.
The Magic Flute
The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
William Finn and Rachel Sheinkin
Interactive Disney Cabaret
Jason Robert Brown
Trial by Jury
Gilbert & Sullivan
The Pirates of Penzance
Radio Soap Opera
Gilbert & Sullivan; a collaboration with USU Theatre Department
The Old Maid & The Thief and other Menotti excerpts
The Magic Flute
Flaherty; a collaboration with USU Theatre Department
Scenes from The Merry Wives of Windsor
The Wolf and Seven Kids
Scenes from Cosi Fan Tutte
Shane Mickelson (USU student)
Sondheim & Wheeler; a collaboration with USU Theatre Department
Amahl and the Night Visitors
Hansel and Gretel
The Tender Land
The Ballad of Baby Doe
The Bartered Bride
Riders to the Sea
Trial By Jury
Gilbert and Sullivan
La Vida Breve
L’enfant et les sortilèges
The Old Maid and the Thief
Images from past productions:
Photo Credits: Andrew McAllister, Caine College of the Arts photographer
Thanks to the generosity of the Marie Eccles Caine-Russell Family, Utah State Opera is able to offer four scholarships for outstanding voice performance majors to be part of the USU Opera Outreach Quartet. As their primary responsibility, the Quartet presents a mini opera or musical at high schools throughout northern Utah and southern Idaho. If you would like to schedule a performance at your school, please contact Danielle Casós, the quartet student manager.
Recipients for the 2019-20 school year are Megan Warburton, soprano; Hannah Jackson, soprano; Danielle Casós, soprano; and Kaylyn Baldwin, soprano.
2019-20 Opera Outreach Quartet: (L to R) Megan Warburton, Hannah Jackson, Kaylyn Baldwin, and Danielle Casós.
Photo courtesy of Andrew McAllister.
Quartet Member Bios
Megan Warburton, soprano, is a senior from Bountiful, Utah. She recently appeared in Utah State's productions of "Hansel and Gretel" as Gretel, "Dido and Aeneas" as Second Woman, and "Help, Help, the Globolinks!" as Emily. She is a part of the Caine Scholars and University Ambassador programs. This past year she was awarded 1st place in the USU Aria Competition and 1st place in the NATS Competition in the classical and musical theatre divisions. She is grateful for all of the experiences and opportunities Utah State has offered her!
Hannah Jackson, soprano, is a senior in the Vocal Performance program from Taylorsville, Utah. Hannah is a featured soloist on the albums Be Thou My Vision and Homeward Bound with the USU Chamber Singers, as well as serving on the SNATS Executive Council and as a Caine College Ambassador. She recently competed as a finalist in the Career Bridges Grant Awards in New York City and was a winner of Utah State’s 2019 Concerto Competition. She has performed in several USU Opera productions including Dido and Aeneas (Spirit), Hansel and Gretel (Dewman), and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Rona Peretti).Kaylyn Baldwin is a senior at Utah State University earning a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. She is applying for a Master of Music in Vocal Performance this coming year. You may have seen her as Poponel in Menotti’s The Boy Who Grew Too Fast or Hansel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel at Utah State Opera Theatre. In her free time, she enjoys playing with animals, performing with the Cache Symphony Orchestra, and teaching violin and voice in her music studio.
Danielle Casós is from Eagle, Idaho and is currently a junior at Utah State University. She is in the Vocal Performance program studying under Dr. Cindy Dewey. This summer, Danielle performed with Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre in the chorus of Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro. Danielle recently appeared in USU Opera Theatre’s production of Hansel and Gretel (2019) as Mother, and as a member of the ensembles in USU Opera Theatre’s productions of Dido and Aeneas (2018) and Amahl and the Night Visitors (2017). Danielle is a member of the USU Opera Outreach Quartet and the Caine Scholars for Excellence. This past year she received 1st place at the Cal-West Regional NATS Competition in the Lower-College Classical Division, and was a finalist in the 2019 USU Aria Competition.