St. Petersburg Opera Company Brings Pinocchio To Life


November 19, 2019 | By Leonora Serrano

J. Hop Times Staff Writer, Johns Hopkins Middle School, 7th Grade

St. Petersburg Opera
Brings Pinocchio To Life

November 22 & 23
St. Pete Opera Central

Pinocchio rehearsal – photo by Elizabeth Vizcaino, 7th grade

The St. Petersburg Opera Company is set to present onstage the world’s favorite movie Pinocchio.

Pinocchio is a story about a woodcarver named Geppetto who wishes upon a star one night for a son to call his own. The Blue Lady, portrayed by Ashley Thunder, instructs the woodcarver to create his own son out of wood. She explains that he must be loyal, truthful and pledge to always love his son.

After carving an image, Geppetto decided to name his son Pinocchio, but Pinocchio was not just a wooden puppet, he is a real boy.

The St. Petersburg Opera captured every single little detail of this story. They told his story as if it was their own. The stage director Stephen M. Ray, Jr. did a fantastic job of bringing Pinocchio’s story to life with the help of talented actors and actresses.

The cast members had amazing voices but the one who stood out to me was Taylor Alexis DuPont, who plays Pinocchio. She has the most amazing voice I have ever heard. Her voice can break glass.

If you go, this play will blow your mind away. It is a must see and will go down as one of the best Opera performances in St. Petersburg.

Taylor-Alexis Dupont

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Taylor-Alexis DuPont is a Mezzo-Soprano from Orlando, Florida. She earned her Bachelor’s degree at Florida State University before studying under Denyce Graves at the Peabody Institute where she earned her Master’s in Music.

Next season DuPont will become an Apprentice Artist with Sarasota Opera and is scheduled to make her Metropolitan Opera debut in Porgy and Bess.

Find out more at


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With easily-understood lyrics in English — John Davies’ one-hour adaptation of Pinocchio is a fast-moving showcase of operatic storytelling, kid-style.

It’s a colorful, fun-filled re-telling of the beloved tale of a puppet who learns, through a series of misadventures, that lying does not pay.

The music is by Mozart, Offenbach, Verdi and Donizetti, performed by a live orchestra.

Suitable for all ages.


In conjunction with Pinellas County Schools Elevate A.R.T.S. program, almost 600 third graders from Campbell Park, Fairmount Park, Melrose, Maximo, Lakewood, Woodlawn and Bear Creek elementary schools caught buses to Opera Central for special mid-morning performances of Pinocchio.

“This community partner also came to the schools prior to the performance to introduce students to opera and prepare them to sing one of the songs during the show!”

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As the St. Petersburg Opera Company’s website explains, “The performing arts enrich children’s lives in ways that we may never fully understand. . .  We believe that introducing youngsters to our unique form of musical storytelling not only entertains them, it piques their creative curiosity and plants seeds that will grow the next generation of opera fans.”


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