LIMA — Since 1988, Dr. Joe Brandesky has headed The Ohio State University-Lima theater department. This weekend he will have his final curtain call directing “The Three Spinners.”
The production comes as the perfect final piece for Brandesky.
“The Three Spinners” is an adaptation of a fairy tale based out of the Czech Republic, Brandesky’s area of research throughout his career.
Brandesky first produced the play 15 years ago at OSU-Lima and wanted to bring it back for his final performance. Each year, the theater department presents a Theatre for Young Audiences piece, inviting elementary students to the Martha W. Farmer Theatre for an exclusive showing.
“Because it’s been going on for 24 years, I’ve had students on campus who came and said the first time they came here, they came to see your Theatre for Young Audience show, and now they’re students at Ohio State Lima,” Brandesky explained. “It’s been a great pleasure to see that grow, along with the numbers of people that we have, and the number of students that we have in the program.”
In fact, when Brandesky started with the theater department, it was a one-man show behind the scenes.
“I was the designer, I was the director, I frequently acted, I did the box office, the publicity back in the day when print media was a little more active, and I recruited,” he said. “I did everything.”
Brandesky even served as interim dean for the university from June 2017 to December 2018. Now, he and his wife plan to move back to the San Antonio area, where they are both originally from.
“Thirty-two years in Lima was good, I have no complaints, but I think it’s enough,” he said. “What I’m ready to do now is let the next generation do what they will, which is hopefully make it better and move forward. My dad always said to leave the place better than when you found it, so that’s what I tried to do.”
Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.