Theatre, Dance, and Motion Pictures
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MFA in Directing, Carnegie Mellon University
Joe Deer is a professor of Theatre and heads Wright State University’s Musical Theatre program. He is the award-winning director or choreographer of more than 120 productions in off-Broadway, regional and university theatres, including regional premieres of Parade, Only Heaven, Park Your Car in Harvard Yard and others. For Wright State, Joe has directed more than a dozen productions, including The Light in the Piazza, 42nd Street, and last season’s Hairspray. He is a resident artist and board member with The Human Race Theatre Co., with whom he has directed The 39 Steps, Seussical, The Underpants, Big River, and many others. In a former life, Joe appeared in Broadway and national touring productions of Anything Goes, The American Dance Machine, Singin' in the Rain, The Music Man, and Brigadoon. Before they were stars, Joe had the pleasure of directing Kristen Chenoweth, Patrick Wilson, and Nicole Scherzinger. Somewhere along the way, he was also a Broadway and touring stage manager, and artistic director of three theatre and dance companies.
Joe is sought internationally as a master teacher and education consultant, working with students and faculty at many of the world’s top institutions. His book (written with Rocco Dal Vera), Acting In Musical Theatre, has been called “the preeminent book in its field” and was nominated by the Association for Theatre in Higher Education as Book Of The Year. It is selected as a core text for more musical theatre programs than any other book. He has written more than thirty articles for a range of publications and lectures frequently on musical theatre. His next book, Directing in Musical Theatre: An Essential Guide will be published by Routledge in 2013.
Joe holds an MFA in Directing from Carnegie Mellon University and was the founding president of the Musical Theatre Educators Alliance. Joe’s former students populate Broadway, National Tour, Regional and international stages.