The Old Town School of Folk Music’s New Logo

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


The Old Town School of Folk Music’s new logo was inspired by a typeface from the late 1800s. The new logo is a custom typeface that was designed to be used at a large size.


The Old Town School of Folk Music is an educational institution in Chicago that teaches and promotes folk music. The school was founded in 1957 by Pete Seeger, Woody Guthrie, and Bess Lomax Hawes. In recent years, the school has been working to increase its visibility and appeal to a wider range of people. One way it has done this is by revamping its logo.

The new logo, which was released in early 2017, is a modern take on the school’s classic logo. It features a simple blue circle with the words “Old Town School” in white letters. The new logo is intended to be more recognizable and understandable than the old one.

The Old Town School of Folk Music is an institution with a long history and a commitment to teaching the traditions of folk music. The new logo captures the essence of the school while also communicating its contemporary relevance.

History of the Old Town School of Folk Music

The Old Town School of Folk Music is a music school founded in Chicago in 1957 by Frank Hamilton, Barbra Fuller and Gates Thomas. The Old Town School of Folk Music offers instruction in a wide variety of musical styles, as well as dance classes and other cultural programming. The school’s original mission was to preserve and disseminate folk music and related forms of expressive culture from all over the world.

The Old Town School of Folk Music’s new logo, which was unveiled in 2019, is a modern take on the school’s historic logo. The new logo was designed by Chicago-based design firm Interbrand.

After 60 years, the Old Town School of Folk Music has decided to update their logo. The new logo features a guitar in the shape of a heart. This is meant to symbolize the school’s mission to make music accessible to everyone. The new logo was designed by the branding agency, Pentagram.

The Design Process

After a nationwide search, The Old Town School of Folk Music has chosen Chicago-based design studio Positec to create a new brand identity, including a new logo. According to the school, the process began with dozens of designers submitting concepts anonymously; Positec was one of three firms selected for further development.

“We were looking for a studio that could bring both a national and international perspective to the project,” said Michael Orlove, Director of Arts Marketing and Engagement at the Old Town School. “Positec came to the table with a deep understanding of our history and mission, as well as a fresh take on how we could position ourselves for the future.”

Positec partner Alaina Vlieg says her team focused on creating an icon that would be both recognizable and adaptable. “We wanted to create something that felttimeless and modern at the same time. The new logo is an evolution of the old one, but with a cleaner, more elegant look that we think better reflects the stature of the school today.”

The new logo will debut in September, alongside a refreshed website and expanded social media presence. “This is just the beginning,” said Orlove. “We’re excited to start this next chapter in our history with a fresh look that will help us reach new audiences and engage existing fans in new ways.”

The new logo is inspired by The Old Town School’s history and tradition. The double banners represent the two brick buildings that were the first homes of the school, and the blue and gold colors are from the school’s original flag. The star in the middle is a nod to the five-pointed star on the Chicago flag, representing The Old Town School’s commitment to the city of Chicago.


After much research, the Old Town School of Folk Music’s new logo was chosen. The board felt that it represented the school well and would be appealing to the public. The new logo is a simple design that features a lyre and the name of the school. The colors used in the logo are navy blue and gold, which are the school’s colors. The board is very pleased with the new logo and feels that it will help increase visibility for the school.

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