A sought-after personality in the field of entertainment, Dean has made, and continues to make, his mark in a number of capacities: actor, emcee, director, host, and singer. He is increasingly noted for his entertaining lectures and informative concerts mapping out the importance and significance of the Great American Songbook.
Born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario and its surrounding area, he became captivated by the notion of becoming a stage actor whilst in high school. Shortly thereafter he gained significant post-secondary Musical Theatre experience working under the direction of Broadway/New York-based directors at his hometown’s Hamilton Theatre Inc., including the likes of Rudy Tronto, Jack Timmers, Michael Mann, Edie Cowan and John Sharpe. Along the way he expanded into non-musical roles with other area theatre companies, accumulating awards for his both his dramatic and comedic stage work.
Opting to remain in Canada, and to blend his career with family life, Dean has worked for over two decades in numerous regional theatres throughout Ontario in both musical and non-musical roles, including the role of Billy Flynn in the musical Chicago (Drayton Entertainment), Young Whit in Of Mice and Men (Theatre Aquarius), Bill Page in The Voice of the Turtle (Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse), and the title role in tour de force production, Billy Bishop Goes to War (Gayety Theatre, and tour). On two occasions he played the role of Mark Dolson in the two-man play Mass Appeal – the second time opposite actor Jonathan Frid of Dark Shadows fame.
Throughout his professional career, he has continued to explore, understand and celebrate the music of the Great American Songbook, creating and performing shows and programs about some of its most prominent songwriters including Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, George and Ira Gershwin, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen and Hoagy Carmichael. The only performer-based show he has ever created pays homage to his favourite of all male vocalists,
Nat King Cole. In 2001 he began singing the role of Frank Sinatra in C2 Productions’ “Memories of the Rat Pack” – a production that has taken him to Germany, Austria and various Canadian and U.S. destinations including Las Vegas. He continues to sing from the Sinatra Songbook with various eight and sixteen piece bands.
Mr. Hollin was the Artistic & Managing Director of Collingwood’s Gayety Theatre from 2003 until 2006. His resume includes a wee bit of film, some television including three seasons as co-host of ‘Daytime’ on Rogers Television, as well as guest radio host on 95.1 The Peak FM. He designed/directed over 30 shows during an eight-year presence at Collingwood’s Pretty River Academy, and continues to annually offer a two-week Summer Musical Theatre Camp at nearby Meaford Hall, whereby he assembles a staff of active entertainment professionals to work with children age 8 thru 15.
He and his wife, Gayle are the proud parents of four active children.