By Byrne Harrison
New York Theatre Barn is about to embark on its largest feat yet – the company has partnered with Prospect Theater Company (now in its 11th season) to produce a production of the new musical I Married Wyatt Earp, written by Michele Brourman (Dangerous Beauty), Sheilah Rae (Funny, You Don't Look Like A Grandmother) and Thomas Edward West (Enchanted Cottage).
Marketing Coordinator Reed Prescott talked with me about the show and the challenge of funding new productions.
Yes, this is our first time using Kickstarter. Its a fantastic platform that encompasses charitable giving, social media, and the opportunity for each project to express itself outside of the traditional advertising and marketing strategies. It also makes giving fun because you can track each project you are donating too. The thing about Kickstarter is you ONLY get the donated funds if you actually reach your goal. If you don't meet it, you don't get any of the funds.
What lead you to try this type of fundraising? Had you heard of other companies doing it?
I know many individuals who have been involved in Kickstarter campaigns that have met their fundraising goals. As a company, we have had very little success raising funds from our primary demographic - emerging songwriters, playwrights and actors. We knew we had to spread our wings out farther than ever before because this co-production of I Married Wyatt Earp is simply the biggest project we have ever engaged in.
Do you think you'll continue using Kickstarter on upcoming productions?
Probably. We are optimistic about this campaign, even though we are not yet at 50% and with only 3 days left. We are really hoping your readers will support this amazing new project.
Tell me a little bit about I Married Wyatt Earp.
I Married Wyatt Earp tells the story of the famous legend of Wyatt Earp from an all-female perspective, and pays homage to the women pioneers of The Wild West. There have been over 50 retellings of the Wyatt Earp story in film, television and theatre, but this is the first time it will ever be told from the women's point of view - most importantly the wives of the Earp brothers. It's the story of a gutsy Jewish socialite from San Francisco who gives up her life to explore the Wild West. And the music is absolutely gorgeous and breathtaking.
If people want to participate in this project, how do they donate and how much time do they have left?
We have until 9:20pm Monday March 14, 2011. Follow this link to make a donation.
What else is coming up this year for New York Theatre Barn?
That honestly depends on the support we receive from the community for I Married Wyatt Earp. We'd love to continue to support new musical theatre, not just live but incorporating social media and every trend to come. We are a vibrant (volunteer) staff at The Barn. We do this because we can't think of a world without new musical theatre. Hopefully your readers feel the same and will support us and help us thrive.
I Married Wyatt Earp
A New Musical
Book by Thomas Edward West and Sheilah Rae
Music by Michele Brourman
Lyrics by Sheilah Rae
Suggested in part by the book “I Married Wyatt Earp" by Glenn G. Boyer