May 17, 2012
by Aaron Eddy
Bruce Freestone is lucky - lucky because he is one of the few people who can actually say he turned his life-long passion into a career. He discovered theater in high school, pursued a degree at CSU, and plans on staying involved with theater as long as he can.
Freestone was born in Iowa and moved to Colorado at a young age. Unlike most children who dream of being a professional athlete or firefighter when they grow up, Freestone’s plan was to become an accountant for the Navy.
“I wanted to travel places when I grew up, which is pretty much the reason I wanted to join the Navy,” Freestone said.
Just a few miles from CSU in his sophomore year at Poudre High School, Freestone discovered theater. “I was hooked after the first play I decided to do,” he said.
After high school, Freestone came to CSU to pursue his degree in theater, but would soon find a love greater than the stage. Bruce met his wife Denise, who was pursuing a degree in theater, during a rehearsal. “Being in the theater department together was a wonderful time,” Denise said. “We have done so much in the way of theater together since we met.”
Bruce and Denise began working with Openstage Theatre in 1973 while they were still undergraduates at CSU. This was the beginning of their life-long passion together, as they are still produce Openstage Theatre plays today.
The desire to produce theater is what brought Freestone to work for CSU as the technical service coordinator. “Coming back to CSU to further my career in producing and theater was a great decision,” he said.
Freestone noted the primary reason he got the job was because of his extensive theater background. As technical service coordinator, Freestone manages everything from lights to stages to props for students and departments throughout CSU.
Freestone is excited for the future as he says CSU is “launching a whole new era at the LSC for the theater department.” He is also excited about the changes around campus that are enabling the theater program to expand. “Facilities have been the biggest game-changers. We’ve built some incredible buildings, really changing the landscape of the campus since I attended here,” he said.
Freestone is involved with many activities in addition to his work at CSU. He and Denise are actively involved with producing shows for Openstage Theater here in Fort Collins. Productions have included Shakespeare’s Othello; Casino Royale: The Sting; The Ladie's Man; and Shipwrecked, which begins June 1.
Outside their busy theater lives, Bruce and Denise enjoy gardening together, spending time with family, and relaxing.
Looking back, Freestone says he feels very fortunate to have found a passion early and made a career out of it.
“It’s also great being able to live in this community by choice and having family nearby,” he said.
Retirement is not in the plan right now for the Freestones due to their unwavering passion for theater. “We never accumulated much in the way of retirement,” Bruce said, “And, I feel I can keep doing this forever. We both still love everything about theater!”
In considering his 10th year as a CSU employee, he says, “I just can’t believe it’s gone so quickly.”
Bruce Freestone will be playing the title role in OpenStage’s final production of its current season: Shipwrecked! The Amazing Adventures of Louis de Rougemont. (As Told by Himself) by Donald Margulies. The outdoor production runs June 1 through July 1 at Columbine Health Systems, 947 Worthington Circle in Fort Collins.
Contact: The Office of CSU Events
Phone: (970) 491-4601