Friday, February 11, 2011

This Is The Reality

It’s been almost 1 month since we kicked off #fc2011. We created a plan. And now we’re putting that plan into motion. On Wednesday we launched a fundraising drive through “crowd-sourcing” or “crowd-funding” by using social media platforms such as this blog, twitter & facebook. It allows our friends, followers and fans to pitch in and help us make Prodigals a reality.

And, the reality is this: due to the state of government funding in this country Twenty-Something Theatre is still yet to receive any public funding so we rely solely on the private sector to make our projects a reality.

This won’t turn into a government bashing session because the situation we currently face is what it is and the likelihood that it will change anytime soon is slim to none. So, that has left us with no choice but to put nose to the grindstone and make it happen for ourselves.

But we can’t make it happen without you. Prodigals is our first venture into “professional” theatre. And by “professional” (in quotation marks) I am referring to the payment of a standard “living wage” – whether as set out by Equity or another professional organization – to the actors, designers & production team working on the show. Not in reference to the quality of the production. We have always and will continue to always put on professional quality shows; but, as anyone who works in the theatre industry knows, it is hard to pay anyone a standard “living wage” when you are not receiving some sort of public funding.

For example: if you pay everyone Equity minimums (approx $500-$600 per week) over a typical 3 week rehearsal period and 2 week performance period. That alone equals $2500-$3000 for one person. Multiply that by say 6 performers (like we have in Prodigals) and you get approx $15,000 - $18,000. And, that is just the actors. You still have to pay the director, the stage manager, the designers, etc.

So, that $15,000 has to come from somewhere and that is usually 1 of 3 sources: box office revenues, public funding or private funding. And since we’ve already gone over the state of the public funding in this country -- and talked ad nauseam about how hard it is to rely on any sort of projected box office revenue beyond 30% – we are left with private funding.

$15,000+ solely from the private sector alone?! You look at the number, blink a few times, and think to yourself “you have got to f---ing be kidding me?!”.

Well, I’m here to tell you, this isn’t some kind of sick joke. This is the reality.

So, if you are me, then you swallow hard, feel a bit daunted & depressed for about a day or two and then you pull-up your bootstraps and you get to work. Because I’m not going to let a silly little thing like money get in the way of accomplishing what it is we set out to accomplish.

So come hell or high water Prodigals 2.0 is going full steam ahead but we could use your help to get us there. How you might ask? Good question:

1) You can go to our IndieGoGo page (or click on the widget on the right hand side of this blog post), make a contribution and receive one of the many awesome perks!!

2) Alternatively, since Twenty-Something Theatre Society is now a Registered Charity, you can also donate through Canadahelps.org by clicking on the “Donate Now” button. You’ll get an immediate tax-deductible receipt.

Donate Now Through CanadaHelps.org!

3) Or, you can do it the good old-fashioned way and send us a cheque by snail mail. Mailing address here.

Everyone involved in Prodigals has dedicated their time and passion to this project over the past 2 years for (basically) free and they all deserve to be recognized and remunerated for their contribution. Plus, the overall production of the play also deserves to be done right and properly which means giving it the time and funding it requires.

So, thank you in advance for helping to make it happen!!

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

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