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Diane Sullivan Sinor was actively involved in the life of The Old Globe for 47 years, as actress, educator, dramaturge, mentor and adviser. There are plenty of other apt descriptors, such as coordinator, moderator, editor, teacher and director. She did it all. She multi-tasked before such a word was in vogue. All the while she helped to rear 11 children, six from her first marriage to attorney and Globe board member Stacey Sullivan, and five stepchildren, the family of second husband John Sinor. Diane Sullivan and John Sinor performed together in a totally captivating production of “Spoon River Anthology” on the Falstaff Tavern stage in 1967 and in its second version on the Cassius Carter Centre Stage in 1969.
John Sinor was a very popular “must-read” columnist at the San Diego Evening Tribune, and Diane and the children became familiar figures in his entertaining pieces. The couple acted together and separately at various venues in San Diego, with Diane appearing at the Globe in “The Crucible,” “The Innocents,” and “A Man for All Seasons,” under Craig Noel’s direction. In 2004, she understudied actress Ellen Burstyn in “The Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All” at the Globe. She was 72 years old and had to learn 17,000 words. She succeeded.
Sinor wrote and edited publication text, served as a play reader and directed young people, particularly in the Globe’s Camp Orbit program. She also coordinated and traveled with performers to school settings. She was fond of San Diego Junior Theatre, directing shows there and serving on its board of directors. Late in her career, she earned a master’s degree in theater. Nothing interfered with her devotion to the art, and to the Globe in particular. Until her retirement, she frequently moderated the Globe Insight Seminars. When she retired in 2007, she was named an associate artist of The Old Globe. She treasured the title. It meant she was home among her beloved Old Globe artists.
In 2010, Sinor represented Craig Noel in the inaugural Honors ceremony at San Diego Junior Theatre, and she was magnificent. Noel was awarded the honor posthumously and there was no one equal to Sinor on that occasion. Fragile, but still very beautiful, she summoned a huge reserve of energy from an unimagined source to physically assume Noel’s persona, his demeanor. No words, only the presence. It was her final performance and it was stunning.
Diane Sinor died Nov. 5, 2012.
Darlene Gould Davies is The Old Globe historian and former Balboa Park Committee chairwoman.
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