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Professor emeritus John Munsell passes away

Posted on Feb 13, 2013
The UW-Superior campus community, alumni and friends mourn the loss and celebrate the life of John Munsell. A memorial was held Feb. 21 at Manion Theatre, Holden Fine Arts Center.
click to enlarge
John Munsell poses with past student and 1982 alumnus Rick Sordelet on campus this last fall.

John Munsell poses with past student and 1982 alumnus Rick Sordelet on campus this last fall.

The influential theater faculty member and mentor died Tuesday after a brief illness. He was 70.

Munsell's career spanned 34 years, from his hiring in 1967 as a teaching specialist to his retirement in 2001.

In that time, he taught more than 30 different courses in theater, television and speech; hosted public radio programs; and directed more than 60 stage productions. He also ran a touring summer theater program; served as artistic director for UW-Superior Theater; acted in over 200 stage and television performances and helped inspire numerous students to pursue the theater.

Theater students remember Munsell's influence (DNT, Telegram)

Cathy Fank, the theater faculty member hired to replace Munsell, said it was "daunting" to follow Munsell's act. "He is such a dynamic, inspirational and well-respected acting and directing teacher, so I was stepping into big shoes," she said, pointing out that a number of Munsell's former students are now on the theater faculty at area colleges and active in the local theater scene.

In October, Munsell was presented with the UW-Superior Alumni Association's James Rainaldo Outstanding Mentor Award for his unique and significant impact on the lives of current and former students.

A memorial service was held Feb. 21 on the UW-Superior campus.

News Contact: Lynne Williams | 715-394-8213 | lwilli29{atuws}
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