Arts Derbyshire

Artist profile

Mr Deniz ‘Skip’ Önaç

The Colour of My Heart
Author’s BIO for press release

Deniz ‘Skip’ Önaç was born and raised in England’s beautiful Peak District. After completing his Physics degree at UCL in 1971, he taught with VSO at a flagship comprehensive school in rural Clarendon, Jamaica. But, realising that teaching was his true vocation, instead of returning for postgaduate study in London, he remained in Jamaica, immersing himself in its culture, dialect and music.
While there, he fell in love with Joan, a beautiful, black, Jamaican History teacher, whom he married in 1977 after a remarkable courtship. Although formerly agnostic, after much deliberation he embraced Christianity as his personal faith, and devoted all his musical energies into leading one of Jamaica’s top Gospel bands.
14 years later, and shortly after the birth of their son, David, ‘Skip’ and Joan relocated to the Bahamas, where Skip served as High School Principal at Kingsway Academy. Having returned to the UK in 1995, Skip and Joan’s inter-racial marriage is as strong as ever after more than 44 years.

Deniz is available for book launches, presentations and book signings upon request.

Creative Genre

  • Writing, song-writing, drumming, sound-engineering, etc.

Work Undertaken

  • A 300-page true story of the 14 years I spent teaching in Jamaica in the 1970's and 1980's. The title of the book is 'The Colour of my Heart' - a true story of hope
  • perseverance and love' by Deniz 'Skip' Önaç. Published June 2021 by Listening To Your Voice Publishing
  • available from Amazon online bookstore. ISBN: 9781838283858

Work in Education

  • 45 years as a Physics Teacher
  • Head of Department and Headteacher



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