MUSIC EDUCATION OFFERINGS FOR STUDENTS
Providing opportunities for students in our community to learn about classical music is an important part of Utah Opera’s mission. We offer a variety of opportunities for individual students and classes to experience Utah Opera.
We love hearing from former high school Opera-tunities Nights patrons that our final dress rehearsal performances were special events for them, ones they recall long after the experiences. Sometimes they even track attending “Tuni Nights” as part of their career paths. Here are two such tales from cast and staff members involved in our October 2021 The Barber of Seville.
Gavin Yehle is the 2nd Assistant Stage Manager for The Barber of Seville. He manages the Stage Right props, costume quick changes, and artist entrances. In this production, his most important responsibility is to collect dresses worn by Rosina and Berta at the end of an opera performance, and get them reset in the big closet on stage. Berta retrieves both of them onstage and then both women have a quick change off-stage.
Gavin remembers attending Utah Opera’s Opera-tunities student dress rehearsals as a student at West High School in the early 2010s, and attributes those audience experiences as part of the journey to a life in theatre. He participated in the University of Utah Youth Theatre summer camps, attended Salt Lake Symphony concerts in which his parents performed, and played bassoon himself in Utah Youth Orchestra. He has enjoyed reconnecting with its conductor, Barb Scowcroft, who is playing with Utah Symphony in the pit orchestra for The Barber of Seville. Gavin also served as lighting designer for Utah Opera’s Golden Spike Operas in May 2019.
Gavin now lives in Seattle, where he works for an event lighting company and for Bellevue Youth Theatre.
Chase Dickerson, a local improv comedy artist with Quick Wits, plays the silent role of Ambrogio. He is not an opera singer himself, and this is the closest he has ever been to an opera singer. Learning his part held special challenges: there wasn’t a script for his part, and all the principal characters were singing in Italian during all the rehearsals. He enjoyed working out a choreography for his character with the director, and learned to rely on stage managers and their backstage calls. He enjoys his moments of “upstaging” characters by shuffling across the stage in front of them, and especially when he gets to water the umbrellas.
From a young age, Chase was both fascinated and frightened by theatre; he made a few attempts to participate in his public school years, but finally found his way during college and beyond. He has been a member of the Quick Wits Comedy troupe for the past 8 years. His day job is software engineering, and he flexes the other side of his brain in the theatre.
Chase credits attending Utah Opera Opera-tunities student dress rehearsals in his history of theatre experience. A friend learned that students could sign up to attend without a school group (they attended Fremont HS), and they attended several Tuni Nights together in the early 2000s. He remembers noting the steeply raked stage in our Girl of the Golden West. Coming back to Utah Opera to be in a production is a full-circle experience for Chase. Theatre once was intimidating to him, but learning to be comfortable in our opera audience was part of his progress in becoming a theatre performer today.
Utah Symphony | Utah Opera hosts masterclasses with visiting guest artists. The public is welcome to audit these classes.
HIGH SCHOOL MUSIC CLUBS
You and your friends can enjoy great performances at a low price by organizing a music club in collaboration with Utah Symphony | Utah Opera.
- Gather interested students at your school and, on our online ticket request form, explore the concerts and opera performances you’d like to attend.
- Decide on a package:
Symphony Club: Select four symphony concerts and one opera final dress rehearsal from the provided list. Cost per student is $20 for public and charter schools; $25 per student for private and home schools (basic package).
Opera Club: Receive tickets to all four final dress rehearsals. Free for public and charter schools. For private and home schools, the cost per student is $20 (basic package).
- Register your club and order your tickets.
- Enjoy! Consider scheduling a tour of one of our buildings or inviting a musician or staff member to speak to your group.
OTHER RESOURCES FOR STUDENTS