Author Archives: leslie

Didn’t you know this stuff ?

Plato

Read this:

http://bit.ly/1anmXWO

Then ask yourself how much of it “felt right” to you?

And i you can remember back to that survey course you took in History of Philosophy as an undergraduate, consider it in the context of Plato’s Charioteer Allegory.  After all, whether you knew it at the time or not, those philosophy courses were one of the most important parts of your education as a fund raiser!

Plato

Plato

Grant-Finding Resources

Successful grantseeking is a discipline that requires discipline.

Firstly, Google www.google.com. Google is an underrated funding resource.
Search on the name of your project, fund, grant.

I.e. new play, fund grant or rigging fund grant.  You get it, right?

Another invaluable reference is “The Artist’s Guide to Grant Writing: How to Find Funds and Write Foolproof Proposals for the Visual, Literary, and Performing Artist” by Gigi Rosenberg. It is easily available on Amazon. Don’t be put off if you don’t consider yourself to be an “artist”; if you’re a grantseeker, this book is for you.
Visit each of these websites (below) at least once a week. There is a wealth of info for grantseekers and it changes regularly as funders provide new information. Many of these websites will allow you to register to be notified via e-mail when new opportunities are posted.
www.foundationcenter.org
www.philanthropy.com
www.artopportunitiesmonthly.com
www.artdeadline.com
www.creative-capital.org
source.nyfa.org/content/search/search.aspx?SA=1
www.collegeart.org
www.grants.gov
www.arts.gov
www.guidestar.org (Guidestar is a great website for you to research the funders you’ve identified.  Look at their 990 Forms to learn more about them.)

Finally, don’t forget that most foundations and public funders have their own websites. These websites will be very useful to you.

Last – but certainly  not the least – when you’ve identified a potential funder, reach out to them to discuss your project.  They don’t bite.  Do this before you submit a grant application to be sure that your project is the right “fit.”

Good luck!

 

Opera is dead. Really?

Opera is dead.  Really?

On the Washington Post’s “Wonkblog” (now there’s a word that should have never been born), Christopher Ingraham posits that opera is dead, based on an analysis of works produced by the Metropolitan Opera that shows that the Met rarely performs operas created in the past 50 years.   He asserts that ” opera ceased to exist as a contemporary art form roughly around 1970″.

You can read the whole thing here:  http://wapo.st/1xtoFNo

Decide for yourself.

TCG’s Theatre Facts 2013

How does your theatre stack up?

Here’s the latest from TCG:  TCG’s Theatre Facts 2013 report of the financial health of the field. Theatre Facts is the only in-depth report that examines the attendance, performance and overall fiscal state of the not-for-profit professional theatre industry.

The full report can be found here<http://www.tcg.org/pdfs/tools/TCG_TheatreFacts_2013.pdf> and the press release is below. A few highlights:

*         Theatres posted a 40.8% growth in total earned income. This increase reflects the impact of the recession on 2009 numbers, and the growth across multiple earned revenue streams, including: single ticket income, subscription income, education/outreach programs, rental income, booked-in events, endowment/transfers, and capital gains.

*         However, overall contributed income dropped 4.3% from 2009, in foundation, corporate, and government support. The only area that showed strength were individual contributed income and fundraising events.
So while the external conditions of the theatre of the field are challenging, theatres are being resourceful with revenue/income strategies and creative audience engagement strategies.

*         Working capital-the unrestricted resources available to meet day-to-day obligations and cash needs-still remains a challenge; it was negative in each of the past 5 years.

Your first time at a Board meeting

I’m doing some work today to help a client prepare for the first Board meeting of a brand new non-profit organization.  Heady stuff!

While I was poking around on the Interwebs, I found this wonderful article on Fast Company about this very thing:  http://www.fastcompany.com/1705897/heading-your-first-nonprofit-board-meeting-heres-what-you-need-know

It’s a quick read by Alice Korngold that outlines some Do’s and Don’ts for the first time Board member, whether it’s first time as an npo Board member or first time as a new Board member.