- M.F.A. Theatre Performance, University of Idaho, Moscow, Idaho
- B.A. Elementary and Middle Education, Saint Norbert College, De Pere, Wisc.
- Additional study: Mary Baldwin College, Staunton, Va.
Esterhuizen has worked as an actor in Chicago-based equity theater companies including Chicago Children’s Theatre, Victory Garden’s Theater and The House Theatre. She was also a company actor with the American Shakespeare Center (ASC) of Staunton, Va., for several years during which time she completed three national tours, four residencies, 20 productions and played more than 30 roles. During her time with ASC, Esterhuizen taught courses including Women in Shakespeare, Shakespeare’s Welsh Characters, Music in Shakespeare, Rhetoric and Staging Practices for Shakespeare.
Esterhuizen’s TV/commercial work includes a regional commercial shot for Door County, Wisc., Tourism. She is currently cast as Gertrude in The Vintage Theatre Company, W.Va., touring production of “Hamlet.”
Esterhuizen completed her M.F.A. with honors in theatre performance at the University Idaho’s Department of Theatre and Film under Kelly Quinnett, David Lee-Painter and Rob Caisley, among others. She also studied Suzuki-based physical theater under Robyn Hunt and Steven Pearson, Meisner technique with Kathy Scambiatterra, Alexander technique with Michael D. Frederick, voice with Chris Thompson and others, and clown and mask with Paul Kalina and Adrian Danzig of 500 Clown.
In addition to her career as a theatre artist, Esterhuizen is proud to have a rich foundation as an educator, having taught in both private and public schools at every grade level. Through her careers in education and theatre, she developed her philosophy of teaching which is grounded in a hands-on approach that emphasizes a student-driven process of experiential learning, fearless exploration, keen observation, and joy!
Having worked with students of numerous backgrounds, special needs, gifts, and exceptionalities, Esterhuizen is adept at tailoring the learning experience to suit the particular needs of each student in her classroom and challenges them to discover their utmost potential. She is excited to be the theatre program director at D&E, where small class sizes allow her to make meaningful connections with her students on a daily basis as they journey their unique paths.