Q&A with ‘The Harpies’ cast member Sarah Keller


Alicia Dougherty, Editor

With the excitement and anticipation of UW-Whitewater’s first opera production “The Harpies” since the pandemic, Royal Purple decided to sit down with cast member Sarah Keller who plays one of the harpies for a Q&A to talk about her career as a student of music and her experience on the production. For those of you who might be wondering what a harpy is, you’ll have to go back to Ancient Greek and Roman mythology. There are several depictions of the creatures but one of the most well known descriptions comes from “Jason and the Argonauts” where they are described as foul creatures with bodies of birds and the heads of maidens that snatch people away. 

Q: How long have you been singing?

I would say ever since I learned to talk I have always been singing a tune. I started singing in choir when I was in fourth grade and I have been singing ever since. I started singing my high notes though in seventh or eighth grade.

Q: When did you realize a career in music was a path you wanted to pursue?

I always knew music was what I wanted to do, but mainly being on stage because I was a dancer and a singer so just anyway I could be on stage. But, I would say as I got older into middle school and high school I just knew it had to be singing. I actually tried to do something else my first semester here, but my love for singing just would not let me. 

Q: How many performances have you done throughout your life?

With all my choir performances, it has to be like 15 but if I include dance maybe even 20.

Q: Is there anything different about this production [“The Harpies”] that makes it different from others for you?

Yes. This is my first production where I sing very high. I go to a high D flat in this production and this is the first time I’ve been able to sing a high D flat in any of the songs I have done. I’ve never played a villain before and I’m kind of a villain in this and it’s very new to me. I have a fight scene in this production and I have never done a fight song before. We usually do fight calls before every performance so any scene that has falling in it or when we are in hand to hand combat in them, so we do all of those.

Q:  What’s been the best part of the whole experience of this production?

Being with my friends. I’m really friends with everyone in the show and so we have a lot of fun. 
Get the chance to see Sarah Keller’s fabulous performance by getting your tickets to see “The Harpies” at https://tickets.uww.edu/Online/default.asp.