The curtain may have closed on her business career but Deanne’s next act has just begun. Few adult students have majored in theatre at Otterbein because of the time commitment and the competition for a small number of openings each year, but Deanne was determined to live her dream.
Deanne loved performing in high school plays, band and choir. But soon after graduation she married and had three children. Though she had a passion for performing, she concentrated on business - working part time to help support her family. After 21 years of marriage, she found herself divorced and without a career. Deanne took classes to become a real estate appraiser, and soon started her own appraisal business. When the housing boom ended, her business collapsed and the bank where she worked part time laid her off.
The turning point came later that year when a good friend was tragically killed.
“Driving home from the funeral, I realized that life is short and nothing is guaranteed,” Deanne said. “I thought, ‘This is it. I’m going to go to college and I’m going to embrace everything I’ve wanted.’”
After meeting with an Otterbein advisor, Deanne applied to the theatre program and interviewed with Dr. John Stefano, chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance.
“Dr. Stefano looked me in the eye and told me to put into writing everything I had told him about my life – my business experience, my community theatre involvement and my aspirations.”
Since being accepted into Otterbein’s theatre program, Deanne has been busy. She was invited by Ray Gin, the Tony Award-winning stage manager and production stage manager for Dream Girls, to shadow him and two assistants on a tour in Cincinnati. Deanne recently completed her role as house manager for Otterbein’s Summer Theatre production of Nunsense.
“I can do this,” she said. “A year ago I didn’t believe I would be standing here as a theatre student at Otterbein.”
Deanne hopes her next act will be a master’s degree in theatre education. She wants to develop a curriculum that both churches and schools will use to instruct teachers to teach theatre. She said she is grateful to Otterbein for the second chance she was given and the opportunity for her encore career.
Learn more about Theatre and Dance at Otterbein. Also, learn about our education opportunities for adult and transfer students.
/ Office of Marketing and Communications
The Office of Marketing and Communications is located at 141 W. Park St.
M-F: 8:30 am – 5:00 pm
M-F: 8:30 am – 4:00 pm (summer)
p / 614.823.1600
f / 614.823.1360
Find the Information for You
What's Happening No