CELIA (Collaborative Education, Leadership, and Innovation in the Arts)

Joe Deer

Chair, Theatre, Dance, and Motion Pictures
Recognition Year: 

Joe Deer is chair of the Department of Theatre, Dance, and Motion Pictures and Director of The Musical Theatre Initiative at Wright State University. His over 170 directing and choreography credits range from off-Broadway to regional, international, and university stages. A veteran Broadway performer and stage manager, Deer directs extensively for The Human Race Theatre Company (resident artist), Muse Machine, West Virginia Public Theatre, Mountain Playhouse, and many other companies. He was artistic director of Struthers Library Theatre, NYC Tapworks, and Summer Stage Wright. Deer teaches internationally in England, Germany, Denmark, Canada, and at many of the top theatre programs around the world. He is the author of more than 40 articles, and his books include Directing in Musical Theatre: An Essential Guide and Acting in Musical Theatre: A Comprehensive Course (with Rocco Dal Vera), which have been translated into Italian, Portuguese, Korean, and upcoming in Chinese. He was the founding president of the Musical Theatre Educators’ Alliance and is a frequent presenter of workshops for students and teachers through the Educational Theatre Association and the Association for Theatre in Higher Education. Deer was the recipient of Wright State’s Trustees’ Award for Faculty Excellence and the 2016 Ohio Governor’s Award for Arts Education.


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