VU in the News

Dana Burt Phillips Theatre Scholarship established

January 10, 2017 - Dana Burt Phillips Theatre Scholarship established

VINCENNES, Ind. - The Dana Burt Phillips Theatre Scholarship has been established by his family to honor his legacy and his time as a Vincennes University student.

The memorial scholarship, honoring the life of Dana who died on July 24, 2016, has been created at the Vincennes University Foundation and will provide funds for a theatre major studying at VU.

Dana Phillips loved the theatre and appreciated his alma maters - Vincennes University and Indiana State University - for what they did in preparing him for a life immersed in the acting field. His education and theatre experience allowed Dana to play many different roles throughout his acting career.

His performances included time spent acting with the Shawnee Theatre summer stock in Bloomfield, Indiana, and at the outdoor drama venue in Lincoln City (Southern Indiana) where he was a cast member in “Boyhood Lincoln” as well as in Roger Miller’s “Big River”.

Through volunteering with the Old Town Players Community Theatre of Vincennes, Dana was able to hone his artistic craft and give back to his community. Known as Dane by his OTP friends, his organizational, leadership, and creative skills had a major impact on the quality of OTP’s performances. In addition to serving on the OTP Board of Directors, Dana enjoyed acting, working on the technical theatre side, and spending time with his acting friends.

His fondness for the classics led him to direct some of OTP's most popular dramas, including “The Diary of Anne Frank,” “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” “The Glass Menagerie,” and “To Kill a Mockingbird.” In 2004 Dane was the recipient of OTP’s Vermillion Award. Acknowledged as OTP’s highest honor, the award recognizes individuals who have contributed to the overall success of OTP through long-term commitment, extraordinary leadership, and meritorious service.

The Dana Burt Phillips Theatre Scholarship honors the memory of Dana. It is intended to pass forward to other aspiring VU theatre students the opportunity to develop their theatre skills, knowledge, and experience. It is hoped that the scholarship will inspire them to pursue their dreams in the acting field the same way Dana had been fortunate to do.

“This scholarship, in memory and honor of Dana, is a positive reflection upon his life and dedication to the community and the theatre,” stated Bumper Hostetler, president of the Vincennes University Foundation. “We are grateful to his family for their efforts and support in establishing this scholarship.”

Additional information regarding the Dana Burt Phillips Theatre Scholarship, as well as how to support the scholarship, is available by contacting the VU Foundation at 812-888-4510 or


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