Sunday, 20 July 2008

Public Fundraising in Second Life

From the note card:

Pillar #1: Ransom for the SL Shakespeare Company & SL Globe Theatre

Shakespeare, Second Life: The SL Shakespeare Company last month announced its Fourteen Pillars Fundraising Campaign, whose goal is to fill up all fourteen pillars to raise L$14 million, L$1 million per pillar. On Friday, July 18, to kick start the closing weekend of its month-long Twelfth Night staged reading series, the troupe plans to hold a “Twelfth Night MegaFundundraiser” in attempt to fill up the first pillar.

At 1 pm on Friday the 18th, seven actors will be jailed for their acting crimes by “an evil director,” likely Enniv Zarf, producer and director of the Twelfth Night staged reading series. Each actor’s bail will be set to L$100,000. Their goal is to woo the audience with only improv acting and their wits. Enniv Zarf explains, “The practical point is to get all of them out by 7 PM so that we can give the encore performance at our previously scheduled time.”

For the remaining L$300,000, the Company also plans to turn the SL Globe Theatre into a true black box theatre—“black, black, and nothing else”—in the historic first ransom of a virtual building.

Ina Centaur, artistic director and executive producer, comments, “We are truly what we say we are—a group of thespians and other professionals dedicated to our craft, bound together by Shakespeare, and way-too-excited to wait for outside funding before beginning something truly spectacular within the virtual world of Second Life. Furthermore, beyond the fact that we are trying to be Shakespeare’s analogue in live virtual theatre (the man was the foundation of modern theatre; we aim to establish the foundation of virtual theatre), we are also trying to create good within and for the audience of a virtual world that has more often been associated with the bad. In turn, though the money would be raised to create the good within, we believe this good will flow out of Second Life through the positive impact of the experience we create.”

Centaur has also been involved with numerous fundraisers based in Second Life, most notably her recent notable contributions in the Second Life Relay for Life campaigns. Despite her success she holds uncertainty in this upcoming fundraiser, “While my RFL teams together have raised over L$3 million through passive efforts and huge bursts through short-term events, we had the relatively easy job of campaigning for an existing and well-established charity for a direct health-related cause. Albeit The SL Shakespeare Company is known to be a source of good in Second Life, the concept of campaigning for major funding for a good within Second Life may be too revolutionary for others to get. We’ve got some tough mileage ahead, both with the technology and production mechanics, and also with convincing people of our ideas… We’ll just have to see what happens.”

Rober1236 Jua the Cyber Trekker of Second Life
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