COLORADO SKY (2022) - shadow puppet opera
Premiere: June 3rd and 4th, 2023 at The Dairy Center and
Libretto by Laura Fuentes
Colorado Sky is a family-friendly shadow puppet opera commissioned by the Sohap Ensemble, the Lírios String Quartet, and Art Song Colorado. The shadow puppetry in the piece is designed by puppet director Katy Williams and designer Melanie Bindon.
Inspired by Proposition 114 that approved the reintroduction of gray wolves in Colorado, Colorado Sky tells the story of a wolf cub named Sky who returns home. Sky struggles to adjust to living in Colorado but eventually learns to adapt to his new world, encouraged by his mother Luna and the ancestral wolves.
The piece is staged with front-facing shadow puppetry designed on a tablet, cut out of paper, and projected on a scrim or sheet with handheld flashlights. The show incorporates the shadows of paper and human puppets and household items to animate the atmosphere and create a dynamic and magical world. A video version of the puppetry is available for licensing.
"Colorado Sky is a brilliant new opera! I was completely captivated by Laura Fuentes' clever and heartfelt libretto and by Ben Morris's wonderfully inventive score - the latter loaded with lyricism and picturesque instrumental effects. The production was, in every way, exemplary. I loved the puppets, and all the performers were top-notch. Every child should see Colorado Sky - and every adult, too. It's a howl!" - Tom Cipullo, composer