Whiz Kid: Opera Star Eichenhorn Shines at 'Winter Fantasy'

A seventh-grader at West Hills Middle School, Miles Eichenhorn is also having an excellent forensics season after winning a national championship award last spring.

Each week, Bloomfield Patch features students doing amazing things in their schools and in their communities. This week's Whiz Kids are teen beat-makers earning popularity on stage and on YouTube.


Miles Eichenhorn

  • Age: 12
  • School:
  • Achievements: Miles was among 50 other students in the Michigan Opera Theatre Children's Chorus (ages: 10-16) who performed in the nonprofit organization's fifth-annual concert and fundraiser, A Winter's Fantasy, at the main stage of the Detroit Opera House this past Monday.

    Miles has been with the Chorus for three years and has gained a lot of extracurricular skills. "You learn how to listen and look and pay attention. You learn how to be polite when speaking to an adult, like a director. You learn all this while you’re getting to learn new singing techniques," Miles said. He said he no longer feels nervous on stage. In fact, he's considering continuing theatre and acting in high school. “When I’m about to go on, I’m really nervous. But when you do go on, you get this rush of adrenaline,” he said.

    A seventh-grader, Miles is also successful in the area of forensics, where the West Hills team head coach Rachel Warnecke described him as a key member of a team which recently defeated nine high schools and one middle school at the
    "I feel better when we win against high schools," Miles said. "It builds up your confidence to go up against really good middle schoolers out of state."

    Miles is used to going against the best in the country after winning at the National Middle School Forensics Tournament event last June in Indianapolis. He took first place in the prose category (reading a story out loud) and helped lead West Hills to a sixth-place finish.

    Miles is close with his brother, Eddie Eichenhorn, 8, and is also interested in reading, baseball, playing guitar, and trying new foods.
  • Key to Awesomeness: Miles is dedicated to doing well, said mother, Emily Eichenhorn of West Bloomfield, despite the crunch on time that opera, forensics, and school creates.

    "There’s local community theatre and stuff that he’d like to do, but can’t," said Emily, who has sung with the Rackham Symphony Choir of Detroit for 11 years. "(MOTCC) are kids who have been at school all day and then have practice from 5:30-7:30 at night … when they’re in the midst of a main stage opera, they’ll go until 10 o’ clock at night and they’re doing homework in the corner at practice."

    Emily added that Miles and the rest of MOTCC are "disciplined" without losing a youthful energy. "They're kids, and they can go from bouncing off the walls to listening to their director in minutes," she said.

MOTCC will next perform Dec. 11 at the of Birmingham to benefit Cass Community Social Services of Detroit. For more information, visit motcc.org.

Do you know our next Whiz Kid?

Bloomfield Patch welcomes suggestions for students, youth groups and even sports teams who wow us with their accomplishments. We want to hear about amazing children and teens and select one each week as Whiz Kid. Submit your nomination in our comment box below or email the information to editor Art.Aisner@patch.com. Please include all these details:

  • Nominator's name
  • Whiz Kid's name and age
  • Whiz Kid's school
  • Whiz Kid's accomplishment
  • What makes him or her successful


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