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Event Details
  • Raising Money
    January 23, 2021
    12:00 pm - 7:30 pm
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Raising Money for Theater 2021: Who, How and When to Ask

Saturday, January 23, 12pm to 7:30pm
Retooled for virtual participation during the current pandemic. 

Click here for curriculum and speakers

Click here to register (please fill out the registration form and pay using the red ticketing box on this page)

The world has been on hold since last March, but hope is on the horizon at last. At least we have a vaccine! It's time to prepare for the return of live theater – it's more important now than ever for the voices of theater to be heard. Get ready to move ahead with passion and a plan, and an awareness of how to navigate our current virtual world to move your project forward. For producers, one important step is finding the money and resources to make it all happen. We invite you to acquire some basic tools and crucial information that will help you to overcome your money shyness (and virtual roadblocks) 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 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 (confirmed so far): producers Bruce Robert Harris and Jack W. Batman (Be More Chill, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus, King Kong, American Son, Carousel, Present Laughter, Natasha, Pierre..., On The Town); Jane Dubin (The Prom, Tony winning The Norman ConquestsAn American in ParisFarinelli and the KingBandstandPeter and the Starcatcher, Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey, The 39 Steps, Ann); R.K. Greene (Peter and the Starcatcher, The Lightning Thief tour, Farinelli and the King, A Time to Kill, Cougar the musical, Room Service); Cody Lassen (Tootsie, What the Constitution Means to Me, Indecent, Significant Other, Spring Awakening revival; upcoming Titanic, How I Learned to Drive); James Simon, producer/investor (Pippin, The Velocity of Autumn, The Play that Goes Wrong), and Cheryl Wiesenfeld  (Ain't Too Proud, The Great Society, 4-time Tony winner for All the Way, Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike, The Gershwin's Porgy & Bess, Elaine Stritch: At Liberty). Plus entertainment attorney Lee Feldshon and Eric Goldman, and financial advisor Bailie Slevin of Entertaining Finance. 

Fill out registration online (preferred): https://forms.gle/6bwdN3HLQjfDcy2D8

or download this application: BOOT_CAMP_app21 (Word) or BOOT_CAMP_app21 (writeable pdf)
and send with payment to: Theater Resources Unlimited/BCMoney, 115 W. 29th Street, 12th floor, NYC NY 10001

$200 for non-members$165 for TRU members

Special workshop/membership packages available.

COVID scholarships available if you can demonstrate financial need. Fill out form here: https://forms.gle/SQAZrFc3nXjduyPu9 

Festival Discount, $135 (for anyone who has applied to any of the upcoming festivals - email for code, use Special Discount button)
Student Discount, $115 (email for code, use Special Discount button)
Email TRUStaff1@gmail.com with proof of your festival application, or a student ID, and we will provide you with a code to use with the Special Discount button in the bright red ticketing box on this page.

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SCHEDULE AND SPEAKERS (subject to change)

11:45am-12:00pm - registration and check-in

12:00 to 12:40 - "Commercial and Not-for-Profit Asks: Defining the Differences"  with attorney Eric Goldman. 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, and new developments during the pandemic shutdown.

12:40 to 1:20 - "Commercial Financing: Formalizing Your Ask" with attorney Lee Feldshon. The required paperwork and structures at every level of development, from front money agreements to private placement to Federal filings. The limitations placed on asking. New paths to take during COVID-19, the impact of force majeure, and other current devel0pments.

1:20 to 1:30 - BREAK

1:30 to 2:00pm - "Why Is This Show Likely to Succeed: Making Your Case with an Effective Business Plan" with R.K. 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. 

2:00 to 2:45pm - "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.

2:45 to 3:15pm - "The Investor Perspective" with producer/investor James Simon. How an investor's interest in a project may differ from an associate producer's, why he invests, and best ways to make your ask so it maintains his interest.

LUNCH to 3:15pm to 3:45pm

3:45 to 4:30 - "Cultivating and Maintaining a Pool of Investors" with Bruce Robert Harris and Jack W. Batman. 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.

4:30 to 5:15 - "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. 

5:15 to 5:30 - BREAK

5:30 to 6:30 - "Where Do We Go from Here?" - an inter-active talkback moderated by Cheryl Wiesenfeld with Jane Dubin, R.K. Greene, James Simon. How do we plan for the future with so many unknown factors? What can we do now to prepare ourselves for the return of live theater? Panelists will share their current projects and plans, where they are now and how they are dealing with the current roadblocks. Followed by a Q&A with attendees.  

6:30 to 7:00pm - breakout/networking

Panelists
  • 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. Broadway/OB: The Prom (Best Musical - Drama Desk Award), Farinelli and the King (5 Tony nominations), starring Mark Rylance, BandstandAn American in Paris on Broadway (4 TONY Awards), National Tour and in London, Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey (Off Broadway and on Tour), 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 voting member of the Broadway League. She is Chair of the Board of Directors of Houses on the Moon Theater Company and a prior 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 and was a member of the Grand Jury for New York Musical Festival’s 2015 – 2019 seasons.

  • LEE A. G. FELDSHON

    has over 23 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, co-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.  He was production counsel for the Broadway revival of Pump Boys & Dinettes and represented stars (including 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 Desperate Measures (2018 Drama Desk Award for original music and lyrics), Who’s Your BaghdaddyMoney TalksBloody, Bloody, Jessica FletcherLibertyEmojilandRooms, and other Off Broadway shows.  He represents co-producers on the Broadway productions of Moulin RougeKing Kong and Chasing Rainbows.  He negotiates screenplay option/purchase agreements and financing documents for film producers, and has worked as film production counsel for Good Girls GoneFly 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 SpectacularA 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

    For over 25 years, Eric has provided legal services to Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony award winning talent, and to technology and internet entrepreneurs. Recent projects include representing the writers of the Broadway smash hit Come from Away and the producers of the highly successful Off-Broadway musical parody of the television show Friends. Before launching his own firm in 2011, Eric worked for 15 years as a Senior Associate for entertainment attorney Mark Sendroff of Sendroff & Baruch LLP. Eric also served as in-house counsel for St. Martin’s Press and Hertz Computer. His first job out of law school was working as an associate for copyright guru Stanley Rothenberg.  Eric is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and New York University School of Law.

  • RK GREENE

    is a producer of the Tony Award winning Broadway and off-Broadway hit Peter & the Starcatcher as well as Farinelli and the King and A Time to Kill.  As an entrepreneur, R.K. has 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. In 2000, he founded The StoryLine Project, LLC, a commercial theater production company, to develop new plays and musicals. SLP made its debut as an above line producer for the Off Broadway hit, Room Service, and went on to produce Love Child, by Daniel Jenkins and Robert Stanton, Cougar The Musical, and Terms of Endearment with Molly Ringwald.  In the non-profit world, R.K. is the Marketing Director at The Directors Company and helped to transfer Irena’s Vow to Broadway and produced several shows at 59E59 Theaters. Currently in development is the new musical Beau by Douglas Lyons and Ethan D. Pakchar. The world premiere album is available on the Sony Masterworks label, www.StoryLineProject.com.  

  • BRUCE ROBERT HARRIS and JACK W. BATMAN

    Bruce Robert Harris and Jack W. Batman are Tony Award-winning Broadway producers who have presented over 50 new plays, musicals and classic revivals, particularly for Broadway and the West End, plus many private and corporate events since forming their producing partnership in 2005. Their productions include - London/Berlin/Australia: Magic Mike Live; Las Vegas: Chris Angel Mindfreak; Broadway: Be More Chill (also London)Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus (Tony nomination)King KongAmerican SonCarousel (Tony nomination), Present Laughter (Tony nomination), Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812 (Tony nomination), On The Town (Tony nomination), You Can’t Take It With You (Tony nomination), Pippin (Tony Award), Nice Work If You Can Get It (Tony nomination), Bruce Norris’ Clybourne Park (Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award and Olivier Award) and Kander and Ebb’s The Scottsboro Boys on Broadway and in the West End (London Critics Circle and London Evening Standard Awards for Best Musical, Tony and Olivier Award nominations); Off-Broadway: My Trip Down the Pink Carpet (also London's West End), StraightThe 39 StepsThe Judy Show; Andrew Lippa’s I Am Harvey Milk at Lincoln Center; and Carrie the Musical (Los Angeles Critics’ Circle Award). Bruce and Jack have also produced five Original Broadway Cast albums (Grammy Award nomination) and were the Executive Producers of Gerald McCullouch's award-winning film “Daddy." sunnyspotproductions.com / sunnyspotcelebrations.com

  • CODY LASSEN

    is a Tony-nominated theatre producer and live entertainment consultant. Broadway productions include Indecent, the Deaf West Theatre revival of Spring Awakening, and the upcoming revival of Paula Vogel’s How I Learned to Drive. He has been part of the producing team for other Broadway productions including Tootsie, What the Constitution Means to MeTorch SongThe Band's VisitMacbeth and Significant Other. Upcoming: the first revival of Titanic, The Flamingo Kid, Steven Sater & Duncan' Sheik's Alice By Heart and Burt Bacharach's Some Lovers. 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 was the director of marketing 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
  • 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 & Sonia & 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.

  • 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 ConquestsAltar BoyzNaked Boys Singing!Pursuit of PersephoneA 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

  • CHERYL WIESENFELD

    Following a career in publishing, Cheryl began her theatre producing career in 1998. Broadway: The Great Society, The Heidi Chronicles, All The Way, Rocky, Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike, The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess, A Steady Rain, Legally Blonde, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, ‘night Mother, Caroline or Change, Elaine Stritch At Liberty, and Hedda Gabler. Off Broadway: 10th Anniversary Exonerated, Play Dead, In The Continuum, Shockheaded Peter, Talking Heads, The Exonerated, The Waverly Gallery. Film: Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me. Current: Ain’t Too Proud- The Temptations musical. Upcoming: The Harder They Come. Cheryl has produced shows that have spawned national and international tours and sit down productions, regional productions, and London engagements which have grossed hundreds of millions of dollars. Cheryl has won numerous awards for her productions including the Drama League, Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel, New York Drama Critics Awards and 4 Tony Awards. She has been honored by Theater Resources Unlimited with “The Spirit of Theater” award in 2007, and The Houses on The Moon Amplify 2015 Award for her support in championing the unheard voice. Her board commitments: Theater Resource Unlimited where she co-founded the TRU mentorship program. The program to date has mentored over 200 commercial producers and self producing artists. Cheryl is on the board of Silver Hill Hospital in New Canaan, Connecticut, and is on the Honorary Council of Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven Connecticut. Cheryl continues her mentoring work and speaks at universities, on panels and for different organizations. She is in her second year of curating a theatre program with the title - Theatre that changes OUR World- at The Quick Center at Fairfield University.
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