• Music by Veronika Krausas
  • Libretto by André Alexis
  • Directed by Judd Palmer, Pete Balkwill and Pityu Kenderes

Ghost Opera is an ambitious production from the Old Trout Puppet Workshop, Calgary’s renowned masters of puppetry for adults.  Combining the grandeur of contemporary opera with the Faustian magic of puppetry, it’s an Ancient Greek ghost story told by ghosts – with the living enacted by people-size puppets.

With music by celebrated composer Veronika Krausas, and libretto by Giller Prize-winning author André Alexis, Ghost Opera is by turns absurd and spooky, like a great horror film. It’s also a real rumination on what it means to be alive, and what it means that we have to die.


The Old Trout Puppet Workshop was founded on a ranch in southern Alberta in 1999 by a group of artists excited by the undiscovered potential of the medium of puppetry. They are now one of Canada’s most creative companies, producing innovative theatre shows as well as sculptures, films, children’s books, music and paintings.  In addition to creating and touring their own work across the country and around the world, the Trouts have also lent their mastery of puppets and design to acclaimed productions such as the Vancouver Opera’s Hansel and Gretel and NAC English Theatre’s Twelfth Night.

Creative team

  • Music by Veronika Krausas
  • Libretto by André Alexis
  • With additional text by Judd Palmer, Pete Balkwill, Pityu Kenderes and Veronika Krausas
  • Directed by Judd Palmer, Pete Balkwill and Pityu Kenderes
  • Sets, Costumes, and Puppets Designed by The Old Trout Puppet Workshop
  • Lighting Design and Technical Direction Terry Middleton
  • Puppet Costume Design Jen Gareau

National Creation Fund investment

The National Creation Fund’s investment of $205,000 supported additional workshop time for an enhanced team of puppeteers and technicians to work with more elaborate sets and puppets and explore the integration of aerial elements into the work.


Produced by The Old Trout Puppet Workshop in partnership with Calgary Opera, the Timepoint Ensemble, and the Performing Arts Residency Program at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.

Developed with support from the NAC’s National Creation Fund, Opera America’s Opera Grants for Female Composers program (supported by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation), the Canada Council’s New Chapter program, the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, and the Calgary Arts Development Authority.

Performance dates

Past performances

Presented by the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity May 24 2019 Eric Harvie Theatre (Banff)
Presented by The Old Trout Puppet Workshop and Calgary Opera May 27 - Jun 9, 2019 The GRAND (Calgary

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