Thursday, May 07, 2009

To Be (We're Not Dealing With a "Not To Be" Option) - The Birth of a Theatre

The first of the projects we're working on that was conceived was the nonprofit Theatre. I've done theatre in almost all of its dozens of costumes for 20+ years. I've acted, directed, built sets, designed and hung lights, written, produced, and ushered, all with varying degrees of success (as an actor, I'm a great director). On the organizational side, I've been a Managing Director, an Artistic Director, a Box Office Manager, and a Treasurer on a Board of Directors. For everything from tiny community theatres to professional Equity houses. One of the things these experiences all had in common was that I had my own opinion of how they should be done. Ah, the vanities that are me.

I knew I wanted a theatre with a classical bent, as well as one that would function as a teaching venue. And one that would be a "residential" playhouse as well, not as in to reside in, but to house a cast of season-long "regulars". The following is the mission statement excepted from the Theatre's business plan, and gives an overview of what separates us from the unwashed (and washed) masses:

Our mission has four cornerstones: To provide the community with a quality theatre experience, through both new and classical works; To provide the community with a platform for education, about both the art and the craft of theatre; To provide access to the theatre experience to those who might not have it, and to provide the local theatre community with a safe and challenging venue for practicing their craft.

We have provisions for the Board of Directors, as well several innovative (well, we believe them to be innovative, anyways) programs, including classes, internships, and several other, more covert ones.

We are planning on a season of either four or five shows per, depending on how ambitious we finally decide to be: A classical piece (Shakespeare, or other such period piece), a revival of a perennial favorite, redone, a world premiere, with preference given to local writers, and something specifically based on a work of literature. The fifth, if there is one, will be at the Artistic Director's discretion.

The basic structure of the nonprofit organization will be based on both the entertainment/cultural value of the shows and the educational value of the classes and programs. We're currently working on structuring the application to the IRS for our nonprofit 501(c) as well as the nonprofit designation for the state.

Tomorrow: The Bed & Breakfast

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Lazarus, The Prodigal Son, and Me.....

"They're baaaaaaack!!"
(Carol Ann, Poltergeist II, 1986)

Okay, we're somewhere between the Jewish new year and the secular one (and a few months past the Chinese one for that matter), but it's a new year and a new start for me and my new old friend, the blogosphere.

This is going to be a new concept for me, because the focus of this blog will now shift, radically. From the random political and social ramblings of the egocentric, to the lessons I am attempting to learn daily.

Not to worry, this is not going to be a "Daily Affirmations" page, nor "Life Lessons in Pastoral Harmony". Simply put: I am involved now in several huge, life-altering projects, and I am very recently aware of the mindboggling amount of pure information I need to process. This blog will track these projects, and hopefully collate some of this info to help me absorb it, as well as allow for feedback from those people who wish to follow the bouncing ball with me. And thanks, Danny, for showing an interest in the various and sundry projects.

The aforementioned projects include:
  • Resurrecting my mostly dormant nonprofit Grantwriting business (ETA: immediately)
  • A nonprofit Theatre (ETA: 2-3 yr plan for opening)
  • A Bed & Breakfast (B&B) to co-reside with the Theatre (same ETA, if the right property is found)
  • A working Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) mini-farm, to co-reside with the B&B
I will attempt to write on this almost daily, and hopefully post a couple of times a week or better, as progress (or lack thereof) occurs.

Today, it's off to the library for a couple more research books on the nonprofit regs, before finding out how much of it we're going to need to need to go a lawyer with. The business plan for the Theatre is done (and overdone, on double digit revisions), and we're working on the B&B one next.

Tomorrow, we'll look at what we have, and what's next for each project.