Deutschmann conducts musical for the final time, will retire at end of the year

Brian Heyman
Ms. Sara Deutschmann wipes a tear away from her eye after she directs the orchestra pit during the musical for the final time.

After 32 years of teaching band and conducting the past 23 musicals at Pattonville High School, Ms. Sara Deutschmann will be retiring.

When the company of Hairspray took their final bows on Sunday, Feb. 17, Duetschmann waved her baton in the orchestra pit for the last time.

Duetschmann worked at Ritenour for 8 years before spending the past 24 years working at Pattonville, and has been involved with the school’s musicals for 23 years.

“Every musical that I’ve been in holds a special place in my heart,” she said. “I just always love the process when sitting down with the team and figuring out how everything’s gonna come together.”

She has had the opportunity to work with Sugar Smith and Dee Uebel in the past, and for the last 14 shows, current theatre teacher Ms. Lara Corvera and choir teacher Melynda Lamb have been an unstoppable trio.

“Working with Sarah has been amazing,” Corvera said. “She has taught me patience, how to be a better teacher, collaborator and director, and I look forward to working with a new conductor because you never know what lesson I’ll learn from them in the future.”

Corvera has several memories with Deutschmann like playing pitball, but some things stand out more than others.

“I love the memories of when we wonder if the show’s actually going to come together and then you appear one day and you’re like, ‘There it is. It’s happening. Today’s the day,'” she said. “I’ll miss all those.”

Orchestra pit director Ms. Sara Deutschmann is handed a bouquet of flowers by drummer Thomas McFarland. She received flowers from the officers of the high school Thespian Troupe after every production of the musical.

After every production of Hairspray, Deutschmann was gifted a bouquet of flowers by Thespian president Alonna Gibson and secretary Elise Thompkins. With there being five shows in total, including Wednesday’s matinee, she was handed five big bundles of flowers.

“Right now, I have all of them in vases on my counter blocking off my family room,” Deutschmann said.

Deutschmann wants to encourage more students to get involved in theatre in the future.

“You’re never going to forget these experiences,” she said. “They’re truly some of your fondest memories, so make sure you enjoy them.”