Theater Resources Unlimited Announces TRU PRODUCER BOOT CAMP
Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU) announces the workshop Raising Money for Theater: Who, How, and When to Ask, part of TRU Boot Camps on February 4, 2018 from 10am - 6pm at 151 W. 46th St., 8th Floor, NYC. Basic pricing is $175 for non-members, $150 for TRU members with $25 off for early birds, thru 1/26. Discount codes available for anyone who has applied to any of the upcoming festivals, as well as students. Email TRUStaff1@gmail.com with proof of a festival application, or a student ID, and TRU will provide you with a code for $40 or $60 off (for a Festival price of $135 or Student price of $115).
It's more important now than ever for the voice of theater to be heard, so get ready to move ahead with passion and a plan. For producers, one important step is finding the money and resources to bring your projects into production. We invite you to acquire some basic tools and crucial information that will help you to overcome your money shyness and effectively reach out to supporters. From pitching techniques and presentation skills to legal requirements and business planning, plus a wealth of first-hand experience from more than a half dozen producers who are currently active in the Broadway and off-Broadway worlds, we promise you an informative, empowering and inspiring day.
Workshop faculty will include: Jane Dubin (Tony Award winner for The Norman Conquests, Farinelli and the King, Bandstand, Peter and the Starcatcher, An American in Paris, Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey, The 39 Steps, Ann), RK Greene (Peter & the Starcatcher, Cougar, Room Service), Jim Kierstead (Tony Award winner for Pippin revival, M, Butterfly, Indecent, Natasha Pierre..., Sunset Boulevard, Kinky Boots, Waitress, Yank!); Cody Lassen (The Band's Visit, Indecent, Significant Other, Spring Awakening revival), James Simon (Pippin revival, Roof of the World, The Velocity of Autumn, Bells Are Ringing revival; limited partner in Rent, Vanya & Sonya & Masha & Spike, Little Women), Jana Robbins (Ragtime revival, Little Women, I Love You Because..., Through the Night, Roof of the World), Ken Waissman (original Grease, Torch Song Trilogy, Agmes of God, Over Here); PLUS Entertainment attorneys Eric Goldman and Lee Feldshon, and financial advisor Bailie Slevin of Entertaining Finance.
9:45am-10:00am - registration and check-in, coffee and cake/bagels
10:00am-10:15am - keynote speech: Ken Waissman
10:15 to 11:00 - "Commercial and Not-for-Profit Asks: Defining the Differences" with attorney Lee Feldshon. We will define terms, then focus on the not-for-profit side: the legal paperwork and structure that is necessary in order to ask for donations, and the responsibilities to your donors, plus the ways in which not-for-profits and commercial companies can work together.
11:00 to 11:45 - "Commercial Financing: Formalizing Your Ask" with attorney Eric Goldman. The required paperwork and structures at every level of development, from front money agreements to private placement to Federal filings. And the limitations placed on asking.
11:45 to 12:00 - BREAK
12:00 to 12:30pm - "Creating an Effective Business Plan: Why Is This Show Likely to Succeed?" - with RK Greene. Your business plan is your blueprint for success, and a compelling sales tool when approaching investors. It helps you understand your project and how best to pitch it. RK will offer a flexible template covering all the basic areas of information you need to include, as well as offering guidance in creating a plan that is professional looking and appealing.
12:30 to 1:15pm - "How to Present Yourself to Investors" with financial advisor Bailie Slevin of Entertaining Finance. We will take a look at a basic money raising pitch both from your side and the investor's side, learning how to speak the same financial language, exploring how to best communicate your proposal to your target audience. GETTING the money is what it is all about but HOW you go about the process makes all the difference. It takes simplicity, focus, structure, organization, and follow through to make it happen. This section will concentrate on "winning language" and "successful steps" to get the support for your creative projects.
LUNCH to 1:15pm to 2:15pm
2:15 to 2:45pm - "The Investor's Perspective: Why Your Show?" with James Simon. So what do you need to do or say to get an investor to write that check? Different investors have different reasons. Major players in commercial Broadway will discuss why they pick the shows they pick, and what you might learn from their choices.
2:45 to 3:30 -"Practical Tips and Money-Raising Secrets" with Cody Lassen. Practical tips, tricks, and tools you can use to raise money and manage investor relations. From initial investor research through closing night and beyond, you'll learn how to create a plan for managing the fundraising process that you can put to use right away.
3:30 to 4:15 - "Cultivating and Maintaining a Pool of Investors" with Jim Kierstead. Who to go to, what to talk about, how to present material, disclosures and much more. Identifying prospective investors is just the first step. How do you communicate your passion for a project, incentivize a prospect and close the deal? PLUS the business and hierarchy of theatrical producing: definitions of lead producer, co-producer, investors, and appropriate lingo, budgets, capitalization, and recoupment charts.
4:15 to 4:30 - BREAK
4:30 to 5:15 - "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Just Started Asking" with Jane Dubin, Jim Kierstead, Cody Lassen, Jana Robbins. The best kept secret about raising money: you have to ask for it. And yes, it doesn't come naturally to everyone. Our panel will talk about overcoming fears, making mistakes and getting back in the saddle. And how they took the leap of faith that brought them the results they wanted.
5:15 to 5:30 - Keynote Speech: Jana Robbins
5:30 to 6:00pm - RECEPTION
Jane Dubin is a TONY Award-winning producer and the President of Double Play Connections, a theatrical production and management company committed to supporting emerging artists and playwrights in the creation and development of new works. Jane is a graduate of the Commercial Theatre Institute's 14-week (NYC) and O'Neill Center Intensive (CT) Producing Workshops and past Director of Theater Resources Unlimited's Producer Development Program, and current Director of the program's Master Class. Current: Bandstand, An American in Paris (4 TONY Awards) now on Tour and in London, Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey (on Tour). Upcoming Broadway: Farinelli and the King, starring Mark Rylance (opening in December), Fingersmith. Previously: Peter and the Starcatcher (Broadway, Off-Broadway, National Tour), winner of 5 TONY Awards; Ann, starring Holland Taylor (Lincoln Center); The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (London); The 39 Steps (OB, Tour); The Norman Conquests (TONY Award, Best Play Revival), Groundswell (The New Group), Beebo Brinker Chronicles (2008 GLAAD Media Award for Theatre). Other: OPA! at TBG Theatre (Best Commercial Production, MITF 2008), Take Me America (Best Musical, MITF 2007), Count Down, (Bank Street Theatre) and the one-woman show that started it all, MentalPause by Margaret Liston. Ms. Dubin is a full member of the Broadway League. She is Vice-President of the Board of Directors of Houses on the Moon Theater Company and a Board member of the League of Professional Theatre Women. For two years she was co-curator of the Hudson Valley Writers' Center New Play Reading Series. She co-produced Hudson River Rising, presenting events for One Billion Rising (V-Day) 2013 and 2014. She was a strategic consultant to SPACE on Ryder Farm, an artists' residency in Brewster, NY and a member of the Grand Jury for NYMF's 2015, 2016 and upcoming 2017 seasons.
LEE A. G. FELDSHON has over 22 years of experience in entertainment and corporate law. He recently formed Feldshon Law PLLC to launch his private practice, after having partnered with David Schwartz in Feldshon & Schwartz, LLP for the last 10 years. He represents producers, composers, bookwriters, lyricists, directors, and other creatives in the live theatrical industry. He has represented the New York Musical Theatre Festival since its 2004 founding and a Tony-award winning actor in connection with the Tony-award winning Broadway musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. He did legal work for Who's Your Baghdaddy, Desperate Measures, Money Talks, Liberty, Rooms, and other Off Broadway shows. He negotiates screenplay option/purchase agreements and financing documents for film producers, and has worked as film production counsel for Good Girls Gone, Fly Away (SXSW Official Selection), and the documentary Darkon: An American Fantasy(2006 SXSW Audience Award). While Director of Legal Affairs and Business Development of the Radio City Entertainment division of Madison Square Garden, L.P., he worked on The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, A Christmas Carol, and Rockettes performances. As a Levine Plotkin & Menin associate, he worked on Rent (Broadway, touring), The Wild Party (Broadway), De La Guarda (Off Broadway), and other shows. He started his career as a corporate associate at White & Case. He received a B.A. from Columbia College in 1991 (magna cum laude, Rhodes Scholar State Finalist) and a J.D. from Columbia Law School in 1994 (Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar). Bar Admissions: New York.
ERIC GOLDMAN has more than 20 years of experience as an entertainment attorney. While Eric specializes in theater law matters, including project financing, Eric also practices in the film, television, music, music publishing and new media fields. As an artist's representative, Eric has worked on behalf of numerous award winners, including Tony-award winners Howell Binkley, Jason Robert Brown, Jerry Mitchell, Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman and Academy Award winner Howard Shore. Eric also works as a producer's representative, including serving as production counsel to the Tony Award winning producers of DEF POETRY JAM and several Tony Award winning producers. In addition to Broadway, Off-Broadway and Independent projects, Eric has worked for producers and artists in connection with productions seen around the world, including London, Sydney, Tokyo and China. Eric also regularly counsels not-for-profit theatres such as Northlight Theatre in Chicago and Blank Theatre in Los Angeles. In other media, Eric has represented American Idol vocal coach Debra Byrd in the negotiation of merchandising and master class seminar agreements, and has negotiated web site development, maintenance and rights acquisition agreements for Broadwayworld.com, the LEGO Bionicle's website and for Dick Morris' VOTE.COM web site.
RK Greene is a producer of the Broadway and off-Broadway hit Peter & the Starcatcher as well as Cougar The Musical. He is an entrepreneur having started several businesses over the years. A theatre professional since 1978, he was a founding member of the Seattle Group Theatre, a multi-cultural ensemble that produced its own work. As an actor, he appeared in numerous productions Off-off Broadway, on tour and in regional theater, producing several projects including a multi-state tour of Mass Appeal. In 2000, he founded The StoryLine Project, LLC, a commercial theater Production Company, to develop new plays and musicals. The StoryLine Project made its debut as an above line producer for the Off Broadway hit, Room Service, and went on to produce Love Child and A Time to Kill. Previous credits also include Rocket to the Moon at St. Clement's. In the non-profit world, R.K. is the Marketing Director at The Directors Company and helped to transfer Irena's Vow to Broadway. TDC's The Road to Damascus also played at 59E59 Theaters.
Jim Kierstead is a two-time 2013 Tony Award-winning producer of the Broadway, touring, Toronto, and London productions of Kinky Boots and the revival of Pippin. He also is involved with the international hit musical Matilda on Broadway and on tour and is a co-producer of the 2016 Broadway musicals Waitressand Natasha & Pierre and The Great Comet of 1812 starring Josh Groban. He has been a co-producer of the Broadway productions of The Visit (Tony nominated), You Can't Take It With You (Tony nominated), Side Show, It Shoulda Been You and Rocky. Jim has worked in New York theatre since 2000 investing and raising money for shows including Something Rotten, The Glass Menagerie, the revival of Hair (Best Revival), American Idiot, The Addams Family, Catch Me If You Can, among others. Jim began his career by developing and producing the critically acclaimed Off-Broadway premiere of Thrill Me - The Leopold & Loeb Story(nominated for Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for Best Musical in 2005) and produced its original New York production in 2003. He founded his Production Company Kierstead Productions, Inc. in 2004. In 2010, he produced the Off-Broadway premiere of Yank! - A World War II Love Story. Jim has been an Executive Producer on the films Between Love and Goodbye, Kiss Me, Kill Me, and the upcoming Wakefield starring Bryan Cranston and Jennifer Garner. Currently, Jim is developing a new musical entitled Unexpected Joy with book & lyrics by Bill Russell (two-time Tony nominated for Side Show), a play entitledCover by Bill McMahon, and a play entitled The Dodgers by Diana Amsterdam about the draft dodgers during the Vietnam War which had its World Premiere production at The Hudson Theatre in Los Angeles. Jim is on the Board of Directors of The York Theatre Company and The New York Theatre Barn.
Cody Lassen is a Tony-nominated theatre producer and live entertainment consultant. Broadway productions include the Deaf West Theatre revival of Spring Awakening, and Macbeth, starring Alan Cumming, Paula Vogel's Indecent and Joshua Harmon's Significant Other. Upcoming: Untitled #4 off-Broadway and in LA Holding the Man, with The Australian Theatre Company and a revival of Merrily We Roll Along directed by Michael Arden. In addition to producing his own projects, Cody consults for producers, theaters and agencies to help them discover how they should market their shows for the best chance of financial and critical success. Previously, he oversaw marketing efforts for Los Angeles' Center Theatre Group and its three theaters: the Ahmanson Theatre, Mark Taper Forum and Kirk Douglas Theatre. He is an active member of the Broadway League, the National Association of Musical Theatre, and serves on the Board of NY's Vineyard Theatre. More info at codylassen.com.
Jana Robbins was recently producer of Roof of the World (formerly The Great Game) by D. Tucker Smith at Kansas City Rep, with plans for a New York production. Jana made her Broadway producing debut with the Broadway musical of Little Women starring Sutton Foster and Maureen McGovern. She was one of the producers of the acclaimed Ragtime revival, as well as off-Broadway's White's Lies. She was also one of the producers of the Off-Broadway musical I Love You Because. Unlock'd won the "Best of the Fest" Award at the New York Musical Theater Festival, and Talkin' Broadway called it "One of the most ravishing new musicals of 2007!" She produced The Jazz Age by Allan Knee (Little Women, Finding Neverland) in a limited run at 59E59 St., which she produced in association with the Blank Theater Co. in LA. As an actress Jana has appeared in 6 Broadway shows including Gypsy (standby for Tyne Daly) and The Tale of the Allergist's Wife (standby for Linda Lavin & Michele Lee), starring opposite Valerie Harper when Allergist's Wife went on National Tour. Her television credits include Law and Order, SVU, Criminal Intent and others, and she was seen in the film of The Women starring Meg Ryan, Eva Mendez and Annette Bening. For more information: www.janarobbins.com.
JAMES SIMON was a co-producer on the 2000 Tony and Drama Desk Award nominated revival of Bells Are Ringing, the 2014 play The Velocity Of Autumn and an associate producer of the Tony winning Broadway revival of Pippin, Play On!, and the West End production of Damn Yankees with Jerry Lewis. Other Broadway shows in which he participated as a limited partner include Rent, Vanya & Sonya & Masha & Spike, Little Women - The Musical, Victor Victoria, Metamorphoses, and many other Broadway, Off-Broadway, and international tours. He is currently being represented on Broadway with the hit comedy, The Play That Goes Wrong. and in the West End with the new musical Romantics Anonymous which will open this spring.
Bailie Slevin is the founder of Entertaining Finance, a financial consulting and consulting firm geared specifically towards freelancers, specifically those in arts and entertainment. With 13 years of experience as a financial adviser and a hefty resume in theater, she is redefining planning for artists and entrepreneurs. She's worked with Certified Financial Services and Forest Hills Financial Group in finance and teaches Financial Literacy and Well-being workshops and speaks throughout the region on the specifics of Financial Management for Artists. As a stage manager, general manager, and producer on Broadway, Off Broadway and Off-Off Broadway, Tony Awards, Drama Desk, OBIE Awards, and IT Awards pepper Bailie's resume. Some of her favorite projects include The Norman Conquests, Altar Boyz, Naked Boys Singing!, Pursuit of Persephone, A Very Merry Unauthorized Children's Scientology Pageant, and Popesical in Concert at Joe's Pub. She currently serves as a board member for The PATH Fund and "Rockers on Broadway, a non-profit Arts organization committed to bringing arts education to all. Visit www.EntertainingFinance.com to learn more.
Ken Waissman is one of only two producers in the history of Broadway to have a musical run over 3000 performances and a play run over 1000. (The other producer he shares this distinction with is the legendary David Merrick.) Waissman developed and produced the original Broadway production of Grease as well as two of Broadway's longest running plays, Agnes of God by John Pielmeier and Torch Song Trilogy by Harvey Fierstein.Waissman's first Broadway credit was the 1971 Paul Zindel play And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little with Estelle Parsons and Julie Harris, and his prolific Broadway efforts have resulted in four motion picture features, a PBS TV special, 25 Tony Award nominations, and 5 Tony Awards including a Tony Award as 'Best Play Producer.' His new musical, Josephine, inspired by Josephine Baker, had its World Premiere in April at the Asolo Theatre in Sarasota, Florida. Deborah Cox played the title role and Joey McKneely directed and choreographed.
Theater Resources Unlimited (TRU) is the leading network for developing theater professionals, a twenty-five year old 501c3 nonprofit organization created to help producers produce, emerging theater companies to emerge healthily and all theater professionals to understand and navigate the business of the arts. Membership includes self-Producing Artists as well as career producers and theater companies.
TRU publishes a community email newsletter of services, goods and productions; presents the TRU VOICES Annual New Play Reading Series and Annual New Musicals Reading Series, two new works series in which TRU underwrites developmental readings to nurture new shows as well as new producers for theater; offers a Producer Development & Mentorship Program whose mentors are among the most prominent producers and general managers in New York Theater; and also presents Producer Boot Camp workshops to help aspirants develop the business skills they need. TRU serves writers through a Writer-Producer Speed Date, a Practical Playwriting Workshop, How to Write a Musical That Works and a Director-Writer Communications Lab; programs for actors include the Annual Combined Audition plus Resource Nights and "Speed Dating."
Programs of Theater Resources Unlimited are supported in part by public funds awarded through the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; and with support from the Montage Foundation.
For more information about TRU membership and programs, visit www.truonline.org or call 212 714-7628.
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