Rudolfoletto, A Christmas Operetta for Gifted Reindeer by Douglas Lanphier Wheeler, illustrated by Gordon Carlisle

Ordering Information

Hardcover, $17.00, 32 pgs, 8.5×11″ full color illustrations.
ISBN 978-1-937721-26-8
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Rudolfoletto, A Christmas Operetta for Gifted Reindeer

by Douglas Lanphier Wheeler, illustrated by Gordon Carlisle

From the author: “The origins of Rudolfoletto began with my love of opera, listening to operas on radio, and with my two daughters, Katherine “Meme” Wheeler and Lucille “Lucy” Wheeler Goodrum. A loyal fan of the radio program Saturday Afternoon at the Met, I listened on my car radio to live opera broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera, New York, while I drove around the New Hampshire seacoast. In between acts, the narrator recounted opera plots.

“Most of these stories struck me as curiously hilarious, however grave the narrator’s tone or how deeply tragic and complex the plots. During Christmas 1982, when Meme and Lucy were fifteen and twelve, I wrote a story for them that developed into Rudolfoletto. Many years later, my four empathetic grandchildren—Emma, Helen, Cecily, and Katherine—dramatically read the story aloud for the family.

“I am delighted that the story inspired the première of the operetta at Seacoast Repertory Theatre in 2014. Now, with the publication of this book, a true melding of my words and Gordon’s incomparable illustrations, I can share this Opera Spoofa tale for the Christmas season with readers young and old.”

About the Author

Douglas Lanphier Wheeler is a Dartmouth College graduate, class of 1959, who has been a member of the History faculty of the University of New Hampshire in Durham since 1965. He has published works on African, Portuguese, and espionage history, as well as commemorative poems for the towns of Madbury, Durham, and Newport, New Hampshire. He lectures for the Humanities-to-Go program of the New Hampshire Humanities Council.

About the Illustrator

Gordon Carlisle makes his living primarily as a muralist, painter, graphic designer, and illustrator, working out of his studio in Eliot, Maine. In 1999, Gordon was awarded a New Hampshire State Council on the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship for his achievement as a muralist. Gordon’s artwork has been exhibited across the U.S., and was recently shown at the George Marshall Store Gallery in York, Maine. Rudolfoletto is his first assignment illustrating a children’s book. Please visit