SUU Students are All Strung Out, with Spring Puppet Opera

Published: March 17, 2021 | Author: Emily Marie Cacho | Read Time: 3 minutes

SUU Vocal Student with AccompanistFor SUU music students, Opera and puppets go hand in hand. For the safety of the musicians and audiences, the SUU Music Department is following all COVID-19 guidelines. All Strung Out will be live-streamed at, from March 24 through March 27, 2021, at 7:30 p.m. This production will be utilizing puppets for the visual aspect of the performance, while still keeping the Opera students safe.

SUU Opera students have shown their resilience throughout these uncertain times. The SUU Opera usually performs once every semester to help train students for their future careers in the field. SUU and the Music department are committed to following all COVID-19 guidelines, including social distancing and wearing masks. Keeping these guidelines in mind, the director of All Strung Out, Carol Ann Modesitt, Professor of Music, Voice, and Opera, decided to utilize puppets again this semester to enhance characterization within the Opera.

Professor Modesitt comments, "COVID-19 has restricted the ability to see the performers' faces when they sing. Audiences also seemed to really enjoy what we did last semester; therefore, I have decided to once again use puppets to illustrate the songs we are performing.  Last semester, all the songs came from operas. This semester I decided to have a mix of music including opera, musical theatre, and pop standard duets and trios. The students seem to be having a great time learning the music, and I think they will have even more fun when we start staging with the puppets."

The first known use of puppets in a theatrical setting was in ancient Greece and have been a tool for storytelling ever since. Puppet use in Opera has been around since the 15th century. Not only does the use of puppets in All Strung Out keep the opera students safe, it is also a great opportunity to learn about this effective tool in their field.

Ashlee Elizabeth Brouwer, a sophomore music major, talks about her experience working on this production, “All Strung Out has been a fantastic production to be a part of. I have had so much fun learning all the music and getting to puppeteer again for the opera program. I am most excited about being able to sing these wonderful songs. We've overcome all sorts of obstacles to perform but we keep our spirits up and we are so ready to go!”

All Strung Out will be a wonderful experience for both the Opera students and the audiences alike. To see this production, please visit, on March 24, 25, 26, or 27, at 7:30 p.m. For more information about the College of Performing and Visual Arts, please visit 

About the College of Performing and Visual Arts

The College of Performing and Visual Arts (CPVA) at Southern Utah University comprises 26 academic programs including liberal arts (BA/BS) and professional (BFA, BM, BMEd) degrees in art, design, dance, music and theatre. It includes graduate programs in the fields of arts administration (MFA, MA), music education (MME), and music technology (MM). More than 60 full-time faculty and staff are engaged in teaching and mentoring nearly 800 majors in the College. CPVA presents over 100 performances, lectures, presentations, and exhibitions each year and is affiliated with the Southern Utah Museum of Art (SUMA), Utah Shakespeare Festival, and the Center for Shakespeare Studies. Southern Utah University is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD), National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD), and the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). For more information about the College of Performing and Visual Arts, visit

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