Concert to raise funds, celebrate life of Deanna Tiller

UNK Communications

KEARNEY – A benefit concert is being hosted to raise funds and celebrate the life of Deanna Showalter-Tiller, a University of Nebraska at Kearney graduate and elementary teacher who died last year.

The event – titled “Deanna Tiller: Her Music, Life and Passion” – features a variety of musical acts and begins at 3 p.m. on Feb. 2 at UNK’s Fine Arts Recital Hall. The concert is free, but attendees are encouraged to offer a donation to purchase a plaque that will be designed in Tiller’s honor. Other proceeds will go to her family.

Deanna Tiller
Nicole Freburg-Hoffmeister, left, is organizing a Feb. 2 concert in honor of her longtime friend Deanna Tiller, right, who was murdered last year.

Tiller graduated from UNK in 2006 with a degree in music education and worked as an elementary music teacher in the San Antonio area for five years. She also taught music in Broken Bow and Loup City after graduating from UNK.

A Grand Island native, she died in San Antonio on Feb. 16, 2013. Tiller, 50, was shot by her boyfriend in a murder-suicide.

“The concert is meant to be a celebration of Deanna’s life, passion and the music she composed,” said event organizer Nicole Freburg-Hoffmeister. “Many of her friends and people from UNK were unable to attend her funeral in Texas, so this will allow them to gather in her honor.

“Deanna enriched a lot of peoples’ lives. She had so much knowledge about so many things, and she was always willing to share that with people,” added Freburg-Hoffmeister, one of Tiller’s longtime friends.

Denver-based dance, punk, dubstep and electro band Motion Trap will perform at the concert. Tiller’s son, Nathan Rogers, is a band member.

The Kearney Catholic High School choir, Freburg-Hoffmeister and UNK faculty Jan Harriott, Eileen Jahn and Darleen Mitchell are among others performing. Some of the performances will include songs composed by Tiller.

“Deanna had a love of music, and there is no better way to honor her than with a concert that will include some of the works she composed,” Freburg-Hoffmeister said.


Source: Nicole Freburg-Hoffmeister, event organizer,, 308.234.5779
Writer: Todd Gottula, 308.865.8454, gottulatm@unk.e


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