Getting Personal: Krannert director Rebecca McBride


Getting Personal: Krannert director Rebecca McBride

What time do you typically get up? What do you do the first hour of the morning?

I usually get up around 5:30 a.m. unless we had a performance the previous evening at Krannert Center, in which case I rise around 7 a.m. I drink coffee, read the newspaper, watch the national news and check e-mail.

What did you have for lunch today? Where? With whom?

Gourmet quiche from Intermezzo Cafe, at my desk.

Best high school memory:

I had the opportunity to attend the 1975 International Whale Symposium at Indiana University with a group of students from an environmental sciences class taught at Centennial High School by David Casteel, an inspiring teacher who unleashed in me a lifelong passion for and commitment to the environment.

Over several days, I observed leading scientists and sociologists from around the world tackle the complex issues of ocean health and species management and I learned that addressing any issue or problem – regardless if the problem is scientific, cultural or societal in nature – is best approached holistically and collaboratively.

Tell me about your favorite pair of shoes.

My all-vegan canvas Keen sneakers.

What does a perfect Sunday afternoon include?

A walk in the woods with my yellow Lab, Makah; a visit with Beau, a 32-year-old Morgan horse I help care for; and grilling out with my partner.

Was there one book you read as a child that you still cherish? Own? Read?

"The House at Pooh Corner," although I do not own a copy.

Where on Earth are you dying to go? Why?

Africa. Its cultural complexity and awe-inspiring beauty have always called to me.

Tell me about your favorite pet.

They were all my favorites. I absolutely adore animals.

Have you discovered as you matured that you are becoming like one of your parents? Which one and how?

I can only hope that I become like both of my parents. I would be very fortunate to inherit their commitment to family, strong work ethic, kindness, and ability to have a great deal of fun with family and friends.

What would you order for your last meal?

Vanilla ice cream with a ton of chocolate syrup.

What can you NOT live without?

My family and friends.

Who do you have on your iPod?

I have a wide mix of artists on my iPod, including rock, pop, jazz, reggae, alternative, electronica, blues and R&B, new music, classical and folk.

What's the happiest memory of your life?

I have a lot of happy memories, but I think I'd have to choose whale watching in New Zealand with my partner after dealing with some health issues. It was a particularly powerful moment of gratitude.

If you could host a dinner party with any three living people in the world, who would you invite?

Jane Goodall, Sally Ride and the Dalai Lama.

What's the best advice you've ever been given?

To always give it your best, set high goals for yourself and enjoy the ride.

What's your best piece of advice?

See above.

What was your first job, and how much did you make an hour?

I was a cashier at my family's drugstore (McBride's), and I think I made $2.65/hour.

What was a pivotal decision in your career, and how did you arrive at that decision?

When I accepted a position with the University of Illinois' Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, I had previously worked in health care management, and while I knew that my long-term growth potential would be much greater in the health care field, I hoped that working in a university environment would be more fulfilling. I've not regretted that decision one day in my life and owe a great deal to the UI and Krannert Center.

Do you have a bad habit? What is it?

I always come up with reasons not to exercise.

How do you handle a stressful situation?

Take a walk, keep breathing and call a friend.