School of Music, Theatre
and Dance

Varner Hall, Room 207
371 Varner Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4485
(location map)
Academic Office: (248) 370-2030
Box Office: (248) 370-3013
Fax: (248) 370-2041

Alta Dantzler

Alta Dantzler

Alta Dantzler     Alta Dantzler
Visiting Assistant Professor of Music
Applied Voice

(248) 370-2943

Dr. Alta Dantzler, mezzo-soprano, holds degrees from Skidmore College (B.A.) The Eastman School of Music (M.M. Vocal Performance and Literature) and the University of Texas at Austin (D.M.A. Opera Performance). Her students have performed in concert halls and opera houses around the country, and on national Broadway tours. Many have earned regional and national recognition for top placement in competitions through the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and through the National Association of Teachers of Singing. Dr. Dantzler has served on the summer voice faculty at Interlochen, and is co-director of the Toledo Opera Summer Boot Camp.

As a performer, Dr. Dantzler is praised by audiences and critics for her “perfect comic timing” (Cleveland Plain Dealer) and “lustrous big voice…with excellent diction and plummy tones” (Saratoga Daily Gazette). In New York, she has appeared at Carnegie Hall as a soloist in Mozart’s Solemn Vespers, and appeared at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center as the Narrator in Peter and the Wolf, as well as in the premiere of a new version of Victor Herbert’s Babes in Toyland. Locally, she has often appeared at Orchestra Hall in Detroit with the Oakland Symphony. Most recently, she joined in a gala celebrating the work of Morten Lauridsen, and with the composer at the piano, performed his work “Where Have the Actors Gone.” On the operatic stage, favorite roles include Marcellina in Il Nozze di Figaro, Prince Orlovsky in Die Fledermaus, Ruth in The Pirates of Penzance, Berta in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Katisha in The Mikado, and Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd, with companies including Opera Carolina, Toledo Opera, Arbor Opera Theatre, Austin Lyric Opera, Shreveport Opera, and Des Moines Metro Opera.

Dr. Dantzler spent six seasons with the Ohio Light Opera, the only professional company in the United States entirely devoted to the preservation of operetta. With them, she honed her skill as a performer of the Gilbert and Sullivan repertoire, and had well over 400 performances in over 50 separate productions of European and American operetta.

She has appeared as a concert and oratorio soloist with the Helena Symphony, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra (MI and NY), the Toledo Symphony, the Shreveport Symphony, the Dearborn Symphony, Oakland Symphony, North Mississippi Symphony, the Texarkana Regional Chorale, the Temple Symphony, and the Texas Symphony in performances including Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Bach’s St. John Passion, St. Matthew Passion, Magnificat, Weinachts Oratorio, and Handel’s Messiah.  In 2006 she toured Brazil as the alto soloist in a resurrection of the work of Jose Mauricio Nunes Garcia in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, as well as gave the world premiere performance of Robert Orledge’s orchestration of Debussy’s Trois Chansons de Billitis at the International Congress on Claude Debussy in Austin, Texas. 

She recorded the role of Dame Paula in Victor Herbert's Sweethearts with Albany Records for which she was lauded by Opera News for her "hefty mezzo voice, and strong characterization that dominated the stage." She can also be heard on the Albany Records and Operetta Archives labels as Dame Durden in Reginald De Koven's operetta Robin Hood, Aunt Mathilde in Sigmund Romberg’s Maytime and most recently she recorded Princess Marghanza in John Phillip Sousa’s comic operetta El Capitan.

Dr. Dantzler (Boover) is originally from Worcester, Massachusetts. While an undergraduate at Skidmore College, she spent a semester in Paris studying voice at the Schola Cantorum, and studied 20th century opera in conjunction with the Schola and the Sorbonne. She also had the opportunity to sing with the Choeur Maurice de Sully of the Notre Dame Cathedral.

At Oakland University, Dr. Dantzler teaches Diction for Singers. She has been on the faculty at Oakland since 2010. For more information, please visit: