Show Me the Money – Arts Fundraising

There’s been lots of talk of late about fundraising for the arts. There is no doubt that times are tough, what with the closing of the Vancouver Playhouse and an economic downturn that has reduced funding from foundations and corporations.

Companies are trying new approaches, creative incentives and pretty much anything under the sun to increase revenue. As Sarasvàti Productions embarks on its most ambitious project yet, we too have been trying new initiatives. We launched a new annual fundraiser last month, So You Think You Can Act, we’ve joined the crowdfunding trend with our current RocketHub campaign and our Board has been working hard to attract new sponsors with the incentive of matching funds from the artsVest program (supported by the Winnipeg Arts Council and Business for the Arts).

There is an interesting article on these new financing models in the New York Times –http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/17/arts/kickstarter-and-artspire-as-models-of-arts-financing.html?pagewanted=1&_r=2

One of the big questions is whether these new techniques simply have the same donors giving in a different way or if arts groups are attracting new donors. It seemed like a great issue for discussion. What makes for a successful fundraising campaign? What makes you want to donate? Are people just feeling overwhelmed by requests?

These are crucial questions for most arts groups right now, but certainly very timely for us. From April 27 to May 13 Sarasvàti Productions will present the world premiere of EDEN. It is the largest project the company has undertaken in its almost 12 year history in Winnipeg. For an independent theatre it is momentous and will certainly be an important artistic event, showcasing numerous local artists. We know we can pull it off, but poducing art these days does certainly feel like an uphill battle at times.

Thoughts?

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