BP3: Edinburgh Fringe!
Written by Max Silver
Where to start! Exciting developments from last time we spoke (well last time I spoke - I mean I say 'you' but really I am just talking to myself at the moment which is a bit peculiar). Speaking of last time how have you been?
Oh really? That's sad I'm sorry to hear it... But I am sure that next time there will be no monkeys to ruin it, so stay positive!
Me? Well after contacting a variety of venues for the Fringe we found a place that was ideal but, more importantly, was run by an amazingly helpful man called Charles. Now whereas other venues were interested in trying to 'sell' us the biggest spaces they had we were a bit suspicious of this as they didn't seem particularly interested in if that was right for our show. Charles, on the other hand, took great interest in our show, talking over the phone and making certain he knew what we and the show were about. With this, he offered us lots of advice on what was best for something of our size and scope and we felt comfortable we were getting the right deal for us.
So what does that mean? We have booked our venue! We are going to the Fringe!!! What a massive step, we all couldn't be happier. We have a 6-day run booked at a small 40 seat venue, with lots of support in advertising and a passionate promoter behind us. Not to shabby eh?
But wait, there's more! I did say this was a good week. The Producer at the Portsmouth Guildhall, the wonderful Mr Ben Clabon, has announced his intentions of making us Associate Artists of the venue! Pats on the back all round! So what does this mean? Essentially it's a fantastic deal with us as an emerging theatre company as it gets us quite a few things. Firstly we get a bit of extra clout, having a big venues logo on your pamphlets as well as using their contacts is great for legitimising the company. With this, we get access to the practical resources and people they have too (think designers, set builders, marketing people) and most importantly their Studio!
Free access to a studio for rehearsals and shows is great, bearing in mind the last production we put on we only had the studio for a few hours before the performance. This meant we had just enough time for the get in with no dress and half a tech. In fact, we were doing our dress in the park with no props or set in the lead up to it. Obviously, this was not ideal! Suffice it to say I was terrified and downtrodden about the whole show which isn't the best place to be in before performing. I put on a brave face for the others and they seemed to not be phased by this. Only after the show did I found out they felt the same dread and were just putting on their brave faces too! Luckily that show was ok but after that, we learnt our lesson on how valuable the studio space is!
I can't emphasise enough how much our documentation was essential in getting this position. Without it, we just wouldn't have got the same treatment. As well as this our insistence on going to Edinburgh Fringe helped a lot as the Guildhall both wanted to be represented there and were shown that we were serious about our company through this. We haven't been yet but going to the Fringe has already been securing our opportunities!
So there it is. Associate Artists with 2 separate runs booked! How did that happen? Well, we fell out of the lucky tree and hit all the branches it seems! I am very excited to be in this position but now its form filing time for the foreseeable future to get some sponsors. It isn't cheap I can tell you that for free. I will attach below a breakdown of all our costs we are predicting so you can get a feel for it. I can say now that it is about £2000 for everything (booking, registration, licences etc.) without food, accommodation and travel which add a huge amount more. But that is very much on a budget, as cheap as it can be done really.
Speaking of sponsors we got very lucky and got offered a job to create a radio advert for £500 pounds so that has been very good for our budget! We have been applying for all the funding we possibly can which is tedious but is the life of a theatre company, or so I've been told. Every penny counts as they say and you have to be in it to win it!
Well done for making it through, you get 125 Brightside Bucks! What are they for? I don't know but you got em, nice one.
This is your glorious leader signing off,
Maximilian Valentine Silverado