Dearborn Symphony’s ‘Night at the Opera’ rocked!

phyllis“An opera begins long before the curtain goes up and ends long after it has come down. It starts in my imagination, it becomes my life, and it stays part of my life long after I’ve left the opera house.”
— Maria Callas

Operatic guest artists and Vanguard Voices inspired the imagination at the Dearborn Symphony’s “A Night at the Opera” concert Nov. 9 at the Ford Community & Performing Arts Center.

Long before showtime, dedicated and well-practiced musicians and singers, under the masterful baton of Conductor Suzanne Mallare Acton, and the artistic leadership of Chorus Director G. Kevin Dewey worked hard to deliver an exhilarating performance.

The well-rehearsed elements of music and song harmoniously came together continuing the Dearborn Symphony’s 57th season, highlighting the beloved operatic arias from Rossini, Verdi, Puccini, Leoncavallo, Mascagni, Massenet, and Bizet.

From Rossini’s Overture, “II Barbiere di Siviglia,” the orchestra executed its performance with warmth and precision. It was easy to see that Acton established a very good connection between herself and the orchestra. As a result the orchestra and conductor were flawless.

Celebrating his 30th anniversary of leadership with the Friends of Opera, founder Quinto Milito, baritone, sang with rich and playful tones. Equally impressive, soprano Rossella Cerioni performed with unyielding elegance. Tenor Carlos Seise and soprano Angela Hench gave memorable performances. Tenor Scott Piper was smooth and melodic, exceptionally powerful and entertaining.

Under Dewey’s direction, Vanguard Voices was stunning, a perfect complement to both the musicians and featured singers. In addition, the Vanguard Grand Chorus was impeccable.

In all, beautifully sung arias, thoughtful well practiced musicians, and beloved music — a harmonious blend of all these elements — made for the kind of performance that stayed with music lovers long after the show ended.

The Dearborn Symphony conductor search continues Feb. 15 when Jason Altieri wields his baton for a chance to become the symphony’s next conductor. Featured guest cellist Dmitri Atapine will help the symphony highlight the music of Mozart, Debussy, Tchaikovsky, and Beethoven. The evening will feature a meet-and-greet with Altieri, Atapine and musicians.

Tickets range from $15 to $35 and can be purchased in advance at or at the Michael A. Guido Theater box office, in the Ford Center, 15801 Michigan Ave. in Dearborn.

For more information go to or call 313-565-2424.