Georgia Magazine - April 2017 - 21
COURTESY ATLANTA OPERA
celebrated Glee Club.
"It was a natural progression to
studying classical voice," Miller says.
"I realized I had a capacity for it."
In 2008, after earning a degree
in voice at Morehouse and a master's from Mannes School of Music
in New York City, Miller moved to
Atlanta, where he began teaching
voice-first at Clark Atlanta
University and then at his
"It just snowballed
from there," he recalls.
Miller has an impressive resume of operatic
roles. In 2006, he sang in
the revival of "X: The Life
and Times of Malcolm X"
with the Oakland Opera
Theater in Oakland, Calif.
Two years later, he joined
the Atlanta Opera chorus and
was part of the touring production of George Gershwin's
"Porgy and Bess" that included stops
in Paris, Luxembourg, Normandy
and Grenada. In 2015, Miller made
a cameo as the toy seller Parpignol
in "La Bohème" with the Atlanta
Opera. He also performed in the
world premiere of the Capitol City
Opera's "The Secret Agent" in 2013
at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta.
So when the Braves contacted
the Atlanta Opera in 2010 to find a
trained voice to perform "God Bless
America" during the seventh-inning
stretch, it's no surprise that Miller
was on the roster. He was one of
eight recommended singers and, he
recalls, the last to audition.
"It was a Thursday night ESPN
game, and there was a two-hour rain
delay," he says with a chuckle. "The
game started around 10, and I didn't
sing until around 12:15."
Perhaps all his years of experience performing in high school stadiums were the perfect enhancement
to his tremendous voice, because
Miller won the part. In addition to
his game appearances, Miller has
been featured in several televised
promotional pieces for the Braves.
Left: A young Timothy Miller poses in a bow tie; years later,
fans would associate bow ties with his stage and ballfield
performances. Above: Miller takes the stage as the toy seller
Parpignol in the 2015 Atlanta Opera production of "La Bohème."
former Brave Mallex Smith,
musically narrated the Home Depot
tool race and driven in a "carpool
karaoke" segment with team mascot
"It's morphed into much more
than I expected," Miller says.
"Tim has been an important
part of our chorus for years," says
Scott Hazleton, director of marketing
and communications for the Atlanta
Opera. "He adds a lot of value as a
leader with the [Atlanta Opera] chorus as well as what he's doing with
the Braves and the community."
As for the Braves, they are
pleased to keep Miller in their lineup
"Timothy Miller has been performing 'God Bless America' at our
home games for several years now,
but his performance never ceases to
give us chills," says Scott Cunningham, senior director of fan experience for the Atlanta Braves. "We are
honored to have such a talented artist as part of our Braves family and
cannot wait for his first performance
[April 14] at SunTrust Park."
And many baseball fans share
that enthusiasm. Miller says he once
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was recognized by a stocker in the
grocery store, who did a double-take
and said, "I appreciate what you do!"
"When people recognize you,
it's the weirdest thing to me," Miller
says. "[My family and I] hear them
whispering at restaurants, 'That's the
guy who sings for the Braves.' It's
funny and flattering."
If his children, Matthew, 6, and
Morgan, 9, are around, they're not
shy about pointing him out.
"They shout out what Daddy
does," he says. "They go to all the
games. They love it."
Several times a year, the Millers
head to Augusta to visit extended
family. If they happen to make it
in time for Sunday services, he will
often find himself singing for his
church family and a set of very
"I am always prepared and
willing to sing a song, or two, or
three," he says. "Whatever Dad asks!
The members of Harmony Baptist
Church have known me since I was
a teenager, so it's always good to
go back home and fellowship with
Miller is no stranger to high-profile performances. He sang during
the funeral for Coretta Scott King