We're Hiring!


Family Connections

Getting Involved





Getting Involved

Ridgecrest Elementary Choir Composes, Performs an Opera

What if the Three Little Pigs were really the bad guys? What if the Fairy Godmother never showed up? Who would win in a dance battle, Cinderella or Snow White?

There’s nothing quite like a fairytale to capture the imagination of a child. So, an invitation to re-write one seemed the most natural place for Sherise Longhurst’s students to start when tasked with composing their own opera.

“The kids voted on the ideas they wanted to include in the opera, and then we wrote a plot outline. Then they split up into small groups, and every group wrote one of the scenes,” says Longhurst, the Beverly Taylor Sorenson choir instructor at Ridgecrest Elementary. “I put all the scenes together into one libretto, but I didn’t really edit their words at all. It’s all their voices.”

The finished product, a twisted Cinderella tale featuring a dance battle with Snow White, debuted to great acclaim – giggles and thunderous applause – at a school assembly and was featured on ABC4Utah’s Midday show. The goal of the project, undertaken as part of Utah Opera’s outreach program “Music! Words! Opera!” which pairs students with local composers, is to expose students to the creative process and help them to see that opera is accessible and fun.

Students learn to work as a team on a big project with many moving parts, from crafting the story and pairing it with the right music and words to designing costumes and staging the production, says Paula Fowler, Utah Opera’s Director of Education and Community Outreach. “They’re learning life skills. I love it when I’m watching an opera and the students are waiting for each other; they’re waiting for their turn to do something. That’s a hard thing for kids to do.”

After the libretto was finished, Utah composer David Naylor visited the school a to collect melodies from the kids. He recorded all of their ideas and then wove them into a 16-minute score. “He turned the dance battle into a disco, which cracks me up every time I hear it,” Longhurst says. “It’s been so fun to watch the students create something on their own. I’m still amazed that this work we performed didn’t even exist at the start of the year.”


Share This Post

Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

Specialty Schools

High Schools

Elementary Schools

Middle Schools

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Statement

Canyons School District is committed to making this website compliant with the ADA. At this time, we recognize that not all areas of this website may be ADA compliant. We are currently in the process of redesigning and creating new website content to be compliant with the W3C Level Two guidelines. If you are experiencing issues with this website, please contact us here communications@canyonsdistrict.org