Godspell May Be First-Ever Crowd-Funded Broadway Production

News   Godspell May Be First-Ever Crowd-Funded Broadway Production Producer Ken Davenport announced Sept. 15 that he hopes to "bring together the largest community of theater lovers and investors ever assembled" to produce the upcoming Broadway revival of Godspell, which is currently scheduled to open in spring/summer 2011.

Davenport's business model, according to press notes, "enables investors to serve as Broadway producers . . . with a comparatively low minimum investment . . . Traditionally, the price of one investing unit in a typical Broadway show can be as high as $10,000, $25,000 or even $100,000. One unit in Godspell is only $100 (there is a minimum investment of 10 units or $1,000)."

All investors names will appear on a poster placed outside the theatre as well as on the website PeopleOfGodspell.com along with their photos, hometowns, personal quotes and links to their personal Facebook and Twitter accounts. "Opportunities for opening-night performance and gala tickets, complimentary tickets to previews, invitations to private cast functions and more may also be available," the press release continues.

In a statement Godspell composer Stephen Schwartz said, "Godspell is essentially about a community of people coming together. Because of this, when Ken told me his idea of bringing together people from around the country with strong personal connections to Godspell as producers for the show's return to Broadway, it seemed to me not only innovative and exciting, but particularly appropriate for Godspell and what it means."

“I couldn't be more thrilled to have the opportunity to produce Godspell on Broadway,” added producer Davenport. "I’m even more excited that it will be one of the first ever for-profit crowd-funded enterprises. Micro-financing a Broadway show is an idea that I’ve had for years after being inspired by French entrepreneurs Guillaume Colboc and Benjamin Pommeraud, Seth Godin’s Tribes, Kickstarter.org and, of course, the campaign of Barack Obama. I’ve just been waiting for the right show. And Godspell is that show. Everywhere I go I meet people who are so passionate about Broadway and passionate about Godspell. And now, those people can have the chance to participate in both."

The upcoming revival will be directed by Daniel Goldstein and choreographed by Tony nominee Christopher Gattelli. Godspell features a score by Schwartz and a book by Tebelak. Based on "The Gospel According to St. Matthew," the musical, press notes state, uses "improvisation and contemporary themes to illustrate the parables, [bringing] these lessons to life through the grand tradition of musical theatre." Song titles include "Day By Day," "Save The People," "Learn Your Lessons Well," "All Good Gifts," "Turn Back, O Man" and "By My Side."

After a five-year run Off-Broadway (the musical opened at the Cherry Lane Theatre May 13, 1971, and transferred to the Promenade in August of that year), Godspell opened at Broadway's Broadhurst Theatre in June 1976. It eventually played both the Plymouth and Ambassador theatres before closing Sept. 4, 1977, after 527 regular performances. Godspell was conceived and originally directed by John-Michael Tebelak.

For more information visit www.theproducersperspective.com, www.PeopleOfGodspell.com or www.Godspell.com.

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