Theatre grad honors school with commemorative calendar
Coming soon to a wall near you: the UIC School of Theatre & Music stars in a 2015 calendar designed as a tribute by one of its alumni.
Steve Munro, a 1972 theatre graduate and a Chicago-based illustrators’ agent, produces a calendar every year that he dedicates to a Chicago institution. His choice this year places the school in the company of the Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, Art Institute, Adler Planetarium — even the Bears, Cubs and Blackhawks.
Artists whom Munro represents donated all the images, which reflect the school’s faculty and work. One image portrays Bill Raffeld, professor emeritus, in the same style that the artist, Jason Mecier, used for his Washington Post portrait of late Post editor Ben Bradlee.
“Theatre alumni have stayed close to the school through the years,” Raffeld said. “We get together for jubilees on our anniversaries. In 2017, we’ll have one for the 70th.”
The school celebrated the calendar Dec. 4 with an open house for alumni and other supporters who roamed the school to look in on performances and workshops.
Munro joined others in reminiscing about their theatre school days, including being cast in the 1971 world premiere of “Grease” at Kingston Mines.
“When Bill asked me to join the alumni board of the new School of Theatre & Music last year, I asked myself, ‘What can I do?’ And I thought of the calendar as a tool. We feature the institution, so it’s not a crass commercial piece,” Munro said.
“It ends up on someone’s wall for a year. Maybe people who see it will come and see some shows.”
Munro arranged for all production costs to be donated and gave several thousand copies to the school. Director Christine Mary Dunford said the calendars will be distributed widely and resulting donations will fund student scholarships.