In the proud tradition of the University’s self-deprecating antics, University faculty, staff, students, and community members came together at the Quad Club last weekend to spoof the U of C in the Revel’s 2008 performance, “Good as Gold: An Academic Olympic Revue.”
The sketch was set in the year 2016, with Chicago hosting the U.S. Olympics. The U.S. Olympic Committee, in recognition of the location of the games’ main stadium in Washington Park, and its proximity to the University, institutes a new game, the Academic Olympics.
This involved U of C academics competing in a series of nine games, which touched on every aspect of University life—from the quarter system to the meaning of academic distinction, to the administration’s committee on student affairs, and to the University’s great books program. The broadcast booth of EGO-TV, which narrated the Olympic events, moved the performance along from one musical number to the next.
The program featured original music co-written by GSB Professor Emeritus Bob Ashenhurst and Ned Rosenheim, the David B. and Clara E. Stern professor emeritus in English language & literature and the College. The duo wrote the music for the Revel nearly 50 years ago. This year’s performance was dedicated to Ashenhurst and included new songs like “Our Acalympics,” along with old favorites such as “Rah” (1958), “Tap into the Great Books” (1992), and “Space” (2001).
The cast came from all walks of University life and included Michael Behnke, vice president and dean of College enrollment; David Bevington, Phyllis Fay Horton distinguished service professor emeritus of English and of comparative literature; Philip Hoffman, professor of medicine in the hematology/oncology section; Ruth O’Brien, a U of C administrator; and 4th year egyptology major Benjamin Patterson.
Barbara Flynn Currie, majority leader of the Illinois House of Representatives, also appeared in the performance to hand out gold medals to the acadathletes. The Revue took three weeks to put together, said Lee Behnke, professor in the department of classical languages and literature and co-producer of “Good as Gold.” The Quad Club Revels, which date back to 1904, went out of style in the 1960s but were revived in 2001.