It is difficult to miss Cullen Sutherland. His six-foot, six-inch frame, spectacular baritone voice and enthusiastic smile captivate a room.
The oldest of six children, Cullen grew up in Wausau and dreamed of going to an East Coast school. But the music kept leading him to the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.
“There are so many opportunities here, you just have to be open to them and go for it,” says Cullen, who spent a semester studying in London, took an audition master class with a famed opera coach and will spend this spring break singing with the UW-Stevens Point Concert Choir in Italy.
Cullen hopes to become a university professor, a trail he is blazing now.
While pursuing a Bachelor of Music Degree in vocal performance and choral music education, with minors in German and international studies, Cullen teaches piano lessons and is the apprentice conductor for UW-Stevens Point’s Choral Union
, an ensemble of about 90 singers. In 2013, he was the co-choirmaster for a university Opera Workshop production of L'enfant et les Sortilèges,
and in 2010 the assistant musical director of Wausau East High School's production of SHOUT!
He also serves as the president of the music fraternity Delta Omicron, is in a student managerial position at the Dreyfus University Center, works as an intern in the International Programs
office on campus and is a waiter at a local restaurant.
Not surprisingly, his most difficult class was also his favorite—tap dancing. “I saw Singing in the Rain on stage in London, and I was determined to learn.”
With all the activities and opportunities, one aspect of his experience at UW-Stevens Point stands above the rest.
“My professors have always expressed an interest in me as a person,” Cullen says. “I have always been more than just a voice to them.”
Pointers are creative. Pointers are determined. Pointers are trailblazers.