Michael Heitmann makes his debut with FBN this season as Wolfgang in Davies’s The Three Little Pigs. An accomplished singer, he has performed throughout the United States for opera companies like Seattle Opera, Tacoma Opera, Opera Coeur d'Alene, Northwest Opera in the Schools, Etc..., and Opera on Tap. Some of Mr. Heitmann’s favorite roles include the title role in Don Giovanni, Count Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Father (Hansel and Gretel), Reverend Olin Bitch (Susannah), and Ben (The Telephone). A regular concert and recital performer, his Love in the Time of Tinder has been performed across the country. In 2016, Mr. Heitmann began making modern adaptations of traditional operas. His translations not only update the language to current vernacular, but also incorporate social issues in order to reach new demographics and future audience members. He has written new translations of The Marriage of Figaro, Carmen, The Elixir of Love, and a reality television version of Offenbach's La belle Hélène, entitled The Real Housewives of Sparta.
Serena Hill-LaRoche, soprano, joined FBN Productions Opera for Kids, Inc. staff in the fall of 2016 as the Administration/Production Associate. She is currently Associate Professor of Music and Coordinator of Vocal Studies at Coker College, where she teaches applied voice, diction, vocal pedagogy and song literature. Hill’s recent performance and/or master class engagements include East Tennessee State University, Greenville Light Opera Works, University of North Carolina at Pembroke, South Carolina Philharmonic, University of South Carolina, Columbia College, Bechtler Museaum of Art, Virginia Commonwealth University, Palmetto Opera, University of Maryland, Central Florida Lyric Opera, Firenze Lirico, Columbia Museum of Art, and Abadía Benedictina de la Santa Cruz del Valle de los Caídos as well as other performances in both Spain and Italy. An award winning vocal artist, Hill was a 2003 finalist in the Southeast Regional Metropolitan Opera Auditions, a 2012 and 2008 NATSAA Regional Finalist and the 2006 Artist of the Year with FBN Productions, Inc. In 2003, she was the Bizet Award winner for the Orpheus National Young Artist Vocal Competition and a Palmetto Opera Competition Finalist in 2005. Hill received a Doctorate in Musical Arts and a Master of Music from the University of South Carolina, both in Vocal Performance, and a Bachelor of Music from the University of North Alabama. Recent engagements include performances of Samuel Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915, Herbert Howells’s Hymnus Paradisi, Bach’s Cantata No. 1, Vaughan Williams’s Dona nobis pacem, Britten’s Les Illuminations, Mendelssohn’s Hymn of Praise, Mozart’s Requiem, and Werner Jaegerhuber’s Messe Folklorique Haïtienne as well as a series of recitals down the East Coast.