Bill Marsland has, on numerous occasions, been called "Mr. Schuester," and some have even said Marsland looks quite like Matthew Morrison, who portrays the fictional character from the FOX-TV comedy-drama Glee.
Marsland, though, leads a middle-school choir.
"The TV show Glee definitely helps some of my [ students ] ," Marsland said. "It shows them that, yes, choir can be something fun, something cool to do."
Marsland watches Glee weekly on his DVRand not just for Schuester. Marsland admits he "loves" the Jane Lynch character, Sue Sylvester. In fact, when Lynch appeared in Chicago Oct. 9, Marsland and boyfriend Zak George wanted to attend her Andersonville appearance, but the duo was running the Chicago Marathon that day.
They finished the 26.2-mile runthe first marathon either had runin 4:48. Marsland actually finished one second ahead of George, he said with a smile.
Marsland and George were participants in the Team To End AIDS ( T2 ) endurance-training program, which benefits the AIDS Foundation of Chicago ( AFC ) . Marsland raised $1,300 for AFC this summer.
"I had so much fun training for the marathon, and race day itself, much more than I thought I'd have," Marsland said. "The excitement of the crowd, all of the different neighborhoods that we run through, it was a great experience.
"The training from T2 was incredible. On race day, I knew I could do it; there was no doubt in my mind, thanks to the training we had received."
Marsland said he's "already excited" to run with T2 next summer, and is eyeing a faster finishing time in 2012. Plus, he's considering running marathons in other cities, too.
Marsland also is chair of the board of directors for Windy City Performing Arts, in which he is a tenor. He has been part of the LGBT chorus for six years and previously was its assistant conductor.
"I really enjoy singing and my leadership role within the group," he said.
The next Windy City Performing Arts show, titled Sassy! Brassy! Classy!, is Dec. 3-4 at Senn High School, 5900 N. Glenwood Ave., and will feature holiday favorites. See www.windycitysings.org .
In a relationship
East Providence, R.I.
Favorite Chicago restaurants
Hema's Kitchen and Tapas Las Ramblas
Favorite Chicago bars
Big Chicks and Hopleaf
Has multiple tattoos, including a recognizable running shoe design on his left calf, which he got two weeks after completing the 2011 Chicago Marathon.
It's a fact
Is working on a Master's degree in educational technology through Michigan State University, which includes three summers overseas. He spent four weeks in 2010 and 2011 studying in Rouen, France. He will be in Dublin, Ireland next summer.
Photos by Ross Forman