Why do we want to Die Laughing?
I’m spending most of this week working on Die Laughing for Fearless Comedy Productions and that means I’m writing about the event. A lot.
So please forgive me if you’ve seen this information before. It’s important so I’m making sure that it shows up in a lot of different places.
Today’s blog is going to discuss why we are doing a fundraiser in the first place. It is really easy to ask people for money. It is a lot more important to make sure they know why we are asking for money.
Our goal for this event is $10,069, which is a juvenile joke. That’s our specialty! It also is probably not enough. We’d be much happier if we made closer to $15,000. I’m going to try to explain why.
- We have an ambitious slate of shows to produce in the next year, which I’ll talk about below. There are venue costs associated with these shows that may or may not be fully covered by ticket sales. Also, we pay our artists. We want our actors, directors, and writers to be compensated for their time.
- Our monthly shows have costs associated with their production. The best example is Big Fun Radio Funtime, which is a show I produce. Toner and paper for the scripts runs about $50 per show and I’m currently paying that out of my own pocket. That isn’t what we want to happen.
- For the last three years, we have sponsored artists in the Minnesota Fringe Lottery. We agree to pay their producer fee if their number is drawn. We have enjoyed giving artists an opportunity to stretch their comedic voice and would very much like for this program to continue.
- This year, we would like to extend sponsorships to Fearless Company Members who would like to produce original work. We hope to set up 2-3 grants of $500 to be available to any company members. They can use that grant to mount new comedy work from new plays to a podcast.
- We hold a room party at CONvergence every year. In addition to the cost of the room, we also produce several events at the convention including the Masquerade halftime show and Big Fun Radio Funtime.
- Die Laughing is not free. The cost of the room, tech and other incidentals means that a good amount of money from the event will simply go to pay for the weekend.
- We want to open our own theater someday. That is the 3-5 year goal of Fearless. We feel the Twin Cities can support a comedy venue that provides options for cheap production by new comedy voices in the Twin Cities. Every dollar we raise beyond the operating expenses I just talked about is going to further that mission.
That’s a lot of stuff and it all costs money. Yes, ticket sales from our shows is a source of revenue but, as with most theater companies, the revenue doesn’t match all of our ongoing production costs.
And that’s why Die Laughing is a fundraiser. Yes, it is a great time and I would do it even if we weren’t trying to raise funds. But I can’t escape the fact that we need to raise funds.
I’m going to end by teasing the shows we have planned over the next 18 months.
This May and June, we will debut “Jenny Bandage vs. the Unpronounceable A.C.R.O.N.Y.M.” Andy Wilkins will direct my script about scientist secret agent Jenny Bandage and her fight against bad research and junk science. It will be produced at the Black Forest Event Center in Minneapolis on May 29th, 30th & 31st and June 6th, 7th, 12th & 13th.
In the fall, we will debut Duck Washington’s show “Caucasian-Aggressive Pandas and Other Mulatto Tales.” Dates and location are still being determined but the show will be directed by Jena Young.
In the spring of 2016, we are sponsoring a remount of two successful musicals written by me and Chad Dutton: “Highlander: The Musical” and “Top Gun: The Musical.” Most of the original cast will return and the original director, John Newsroom, will helm both shows. Location and dates are still being determined.
And finally, in the summer of 2016, we are putting together an adaptation of the film “Clue” to be set in a victorian mansion. We are still negotiating with a writer but Molly Glover is set to direct. This is a very ambitious project but I can’t tell you how excited I am at the prospect of making this one work.
In addition to these major shows, we will continue to produce our monthly sows including Fearless Lab, Double Blind Iprov, and Fully Believable.
That’s a lot of reasons to support Fearless. And I hope you do.
Remember, if you donate before the event officially starts at 7:00 PM on Friday, our Board of Directors will match all donations up to $500. We’d love to see $1000 contributed before the start of the event. Help us if you can!