This year the featured soloists hail from the Governor's School for the Arts (GSA), a magnet school housed in Norfolk, that provides intensive educational opportunities for gifted students in instrumental music, vocal music, dance, musical theatre, theatre & film, and visual arts.Shelly Milam-Ratliff (soprano)serves as GSA's Chair of the Vocal Department whereAdriane Kerr (mezzo-soprano)andHunter Enoch (bass)are faculty members.Ricky Goodwyn, Jr. (tenor)is a former GSA student who is currently pursuing a masters degree in vocal performance in choral conducting at James Madison University.
Shelly Milam-Ratliff, Soprano
Shelly Milam-Ratliff is the Vocal Music Department Chair at the Governor’s School for the Arts where she has taught for 13 years. She delights in fostering a love for opera and facilitating students to find their literal and figurative voices. Operatic role highlights include Pamina inDie Zauberflӧte, Fiordiligi inCosì fan tutte, Susanna inLe Nozze di Figaro, Rose Maurrant inStreet Scene,Suor Angelica,and the musical theater roles of Anna fromThe King and I, Rapunzel inInto the Woods, and Rosa Bud inThe Mystery of Edwin Drood.She has had the opportunity to direct Handel’sAlcina,Humperdink’sHansel and Gretel,Viardot’sCendrillon,Menotti’sThe Old Maid and the ThiefandAmahl and the Night Visitors,Gilbert and Sullivan’sTrial By Jury,Purcell’sDido and Aeneas,Mozart’sThe Impresario,andBrundibarbyKrása.She happily lives in Chesapeake with her handsome husband, three amazing daughters, and dog, Kenobi.
Adriane Kerr, Mezzo Soprano
Mezzo soprano Adriane Kerr is both a performer and teacher and delights in the joy and fulfillment that each profession brings. Hailing from Norfolk, she earned a B.M. in Vocal Performance from VCU, followed by an M.M. in Vocal Performance from the New England Conservatory. She has performed in a variety of venues, from elementary school cafeterias to opera houses. Adriane has been a young artist at Berkshire Opera, Virginia Opera, and Glimmerglass Opera and has a performed a variety of roles, including Rossweisse in The Valkyrie, Marcellina in The Marriage of Figaro, Hippolyta in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Madame Flora in The Medium. She teaches at the Governor’s School for the Arts, Old Dominion University, and the Academy of Music and resides in Virginia Beach with her husband and six fur babies.
Ricky Goodwyn, Jr., Tenor
Tenor Ricky Goodwyn, Jr. originally hails from Western Tidewater. At 23 years old, Ricky is a rising young talent in the opera community whose performances have been described as "exceptional," "impressive," and "wise beyond their years." An avid performer, Ricky has sung numerous solo recitals and is a frequent performer with a James Madison University Opera. Ricky has also been a member of the Otterbein Methodist church college chorale and Baritone and Tenor section leader for five years. He was a regional winner of the 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 NATS vocal competition, and a 2018 winner of the Norfolk Chamber Consort's Lisa Relaford Coston Scholarship. Ricky is currently pursuing a masters in Vocal Performance and Choral Conducting at James Madison University where he studies with Professor Kevin McMillian (baritone) and the Director of Choral Activities, Dr. Jo-Ann van der Vat-Chromy.
Hunter Enoch, Bass-Baritone
Bass-baritone, Hunter Enoch is an active performer across the United States. This season Mr. Enoch will make his company debut with Opera Theatre St. Louis as Scarpia in their production of Tosca, and role debut as Jago in Otello with Pacific Northwest Opera. This Spring, Mr. Enoch will be performing an evening of operatic scenes with the Las Vegas Philharmonic and returning to Opera Birmingham to sing the Father in Hansel and Gretel. During the 2021-2022 season Mr. Enoch debuted as Germont with Pacific Northwest Opera, the title role in Le Nozze di Figaro, the Mandarin in Turandot, and Flemish Deputy in Don Carlo with Maryland Lyric Opera. He performed Scarpia with Anchorage Opera, and Donner in Das Rheingold with Miami Music Festival, both in productions which were postponed from 2020 due to COVID-19.