THE SPEAKEASY KICKSTARTER REWARDS – from Signed Collectible Postcard to VIP On Stage Performance Cameo

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When we decided we would need to turn to Kickstarter to raise the funding necessary to mount a showcase production of “Speakeasy – John and Jane Allison in the Wonderland”, we learned that creating an attractive set of rewards for pledging was an integral part at how Kickstarter works.

(Find our Speakeasy Kickstarter Project Page and Video here)

Kelly Aliano became our Kickstarter advisor.  She explained how the rewards program works, and the importance of having attractive rewards at every level of giving.

When you pledge a Kickstarter project, you can give any amount of money. But every project also has a Rewards Column, listing levels of rewards options, and rewards, or gifts, you may receive at certain levels.

The rewards are there as an incentive to giving, but even more so as a tangible way to say thank you.  For Speakeasy we tried to show that we truly appreciate every pledge at every level by making a unique, tangible, collectible gift available at even the smallest pledge level of just $5.

Speakeasy 5

Here are the Speakeasy Rewards, with commentary sprinkled in here or there to give background:

Pledge $5 or more

THE ALICE ACCESS:

Signed Thank You Speakeasy Postcard

Plus Thank You shout out on Facebook and Twitter and the Notes from a Composer blog.

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Kelly told us a lot of people want to pledge projects they support but may only be able to pledge a small amount.  We want to encourage giving at all levels, because it spreads good vibes all around.  A lot of Kickstarter projects offer pledge levels of $5 or $10, but the offered reward is only a “thank you” or maybe a social media shout out at best.   Kelly advised us to offer a tangible reward at every level.  The Speakeasy postcard will be unique to our Speakeasy showcase at the Theater for the New City, featuring a one of a kind illustration (soon to be unveiled on this site).  Each postcard will also be signed by yours truly, the composer/writer of Speakeasy and mailed with a real stamp to anywhere on the planet. (This reads like a spiel on QVC.)

And there is of course, too, a regular social media shout out on Twitter and Facebook and eventually on Notes from a Composer to everybody who pledges at every level.

V11 - Hatter

Pledge $10 or more

THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS:

Digital download of 1 Speakeasy Song Demo.

Plus Postcard & Social Media Thanks.

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For the $10 pledge you get the autographed postcard, a tangible thing you can hold and turn in your hand, as well as a digital download of a Speakeasy Song demo, which you may not be able to hold in your hand, but is still a real thing you can conveniently keep in your own personal mp3 device (rather than have to go to the Speakeasy page on this website or the Speakeasy Soundcloud page to listen to the track).

As you can see, we also had fun naming each pledge level, creating titles based on Lewis Carroll’s books and elements from Speakeasy.

performers 3

Pledge $25 or more

DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE:

Digital Downloads of 5 Speakeasy Song Demos.

AND name in Speakeasy Program Acknowledgements.

Plus Postcard; Program and Social Media Thanks.

——

Now we’re getting to serious giving levels.  Now we’re pledging with gas, right?   So that warrants a full deck of 5 Speakeasy songs on your listening device AND your name printed in acknowledgement in the Speakeasy program this February/March.  Printed in actual ink, not merely the ethereal social media website variety.

V11 - JL Julian_Eltinge_(the_fascinating_widow)

Pledge $50 or more

THE ILLUSTRATED INVITATION:

CHOICE of 1 (one) free ticket to a Speakeasy performance

Or : Collectible Speakeasy Souvenir Booklet with lots of images and info on Speakeasy, the Roaring Twenties and Alice in Wonderland.

Or: Speakeasy Poster

Or: Speakeasy T-shirt

Plus Digital Songs and Postcard; Program and On-line Thanks.

——

Free tickets to the Speakeasy showcase performances is an obvious reward option.  But it only makes sense for those in the New York Metropolitan area who would attend, or those planning a trip to NYC at the right time.

So tangible cool rewards that can be sent anywhere in the world are a must, since Kickstarter pledges come from all over the world (one of our first pledges came from Australia!).

The Speakeasy libretto has over a dozen pages of historical information and pictures related to Lewis Carroll’s Alice books, the Roaring Twenties, Prohibition, and the Queer subculture that thrived in New York City in those days.  I always planned to create a handsome booklet, or European style Program Book that includes much of that literary and historical information and pictures and illustrations.  It will be a special enhancement to the performance experience as well as a handsome collectible.  We will offer it for sale during the run of the show and also are making it available as a very special Kickstarter Reward.

Another special reward option is the poster for Speakeasy’s showcase run.  The design(s)(!) will be made public soon, but I can promise already here that it will be something special and really cool looking.

Same with the T-shirts, which will have design features completely unique to them.

So, at this level you get to choose between the free ticket, the Speakeasy Booklet, the Speakeasy Poster or the Speakeasy T-shirt, but as we move up the reward ladder, all these gifts will become available.

And the downloadable songs, postcard and on-line and program thanks travel up the reward ladder too of course.

It’s a cornucopia of rewards!  (This really is feeling like QVC now…)

But wait!  Things get really wild and exciting when we get to the highest levels.  As in, you get to be part of the excitement on stage!  Join us below for these extra special cr-a-a-a-zy rewards!  (QVC overkill!)

Flapper 4

Pledge $75 or more

THE SPEAKEASY SPECIAL:

1 (one) free ticket to a Speakeasy performance

AND CHOICE OF
Collectible Speakeasy Souvenir Booklet with lots of images and info on Speakeasy, the Roaring Twenties and Alice in Wonderland.

Or: Speakeasy Poster

Or: Speakeasy T-shirt

Plus Digital Songs and Postcard; Program and On-line Thanks.

——

V10 - GB GladysBentley

Pledge $100 or more

SPEAKEASY SWAG!

Collectible Booklet

AND Poster

AND T-shirt

Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks.

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v3 - dancers

Pledge $100 or more

SPEAKEASY TEA FOR TWO!

2 free tickets to Speakeasy performance.

Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks.

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V7 - 1920s-harlem-gay

Pledge $150 or more

THE SPEAKEASY SWAG SPECIAL FOR TWO:

2 Free Tickets to a Speakeasy Performance

AND Collectible Booklet

AND Poster

AND T-shirt

Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks.

——

SP speakeasy

Pledge $250 or more

THE WONDERLAND DELUXE:

2 Free Tickets and Special On Stage Wonderland Nightclub Table Seating for Two! *

Be part of the show by sitting in special on-stage audience seating, side by side with characters from Speakeasy!

PLUS Booklet, Poster and 2 T-shirts

Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks.

* Limited availability for each single performance. We will try to accommodate everyone’s first choice of dates. Applies to all next level rewards too.

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Ok.  Now things are getting wild, right?  Imagine sitting on stage at a table sipping “ginger ale” from a tea cup, at the Wonderland Nightclub itself!

The theatrical conceit of “Speakeasy” is that the whole drama is being enacted on the dance floor of the Wonderland nightclub.  Even when John and Jane think they have gone back in time to a 1919 Dry March, or have boarded a subway train to the Jefferson Lodge Ball or have crept in Duchess’ bedroom, the drama is always enacted on the Wonderland dance floor, and thus audience members can be seated at Wonderland nightclub tables on the stage.  At this level of giving, pledgers can guarantee themselves not only free tickets to a performance of their choice, but also a seat at the Wonderland nightclub tables themselves, literally being part of the action!

But things can get even wilder….

you could perform a cameo in the show (!)…

keep scrolling, you’ll see…

lesbians 1

Pledge $500 or more

THE OPENING NIGHT VIP PARTY:

2 Free Tickets and Special On Stage Wonderland Nightclub Table Seating for Two on Opening Night, Feb 20 or Final Performance, March 13 (exact dates could change)! *

Be part of the show by sitting in special on-stage audience seating, side by side with characters from Speakeasy!

PLUS invitation to after-show on-set soiree with director, composer and other Speakeasy artists.

PLUS Booklet, Poster and 2 T-shirts
Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks.

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Jazz Age Nightclub

Pledge $1,000 or more

SUPER CELEBRITY CHESHIRE CAT SPECTACULAR:

VIP Cameo performance in Speakeasy! *

Be part of the show! As Charles Lindbergh or Amelia Earhart or Charlie Chaplin or Greta Garbo (your choice!) attending the Wonderland nightclub, sitting with a guest in Stage Side Table Seats (2 free tickets). Get chatted up by Masters of Ceremonies Chet Cheshire and dance with one of the Tweedle Sisters!

PLUS Booklet, Poster and 2 T-shirts

Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks

(Opening Night or Final Show VIP Party for an additional $250)

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The pledge level for the New York City super patron of the arts with a taste for exhibitionism!

V14 - Garbo 3This is my director Lissa Moira’s idea.  Give a high pledging patron the opportunity to act a part in the show.  The final scene of Act One takes place in the Wonderland nightclub, where we get to see Chet Cheshire, the Wonderland’s Master of Ceremonies, and the Tweedle Sisters perform for the Wonderland patrons.  Part of Chet Cheshire’s act is lively, teasing banter with audience members.

Lissa thought it would be excellent if an actual audience member could take on the “role” of a celebrity of the day.  Charlie Chaplin, or Amelia Earheart, or Great Garbo, or Charles Lindbergh.  Charlie_ChaplinSo I wrote mini scenes for Chet Cheshire to play off of each of these VIP guests.  Cute banter, with a quick retort or two that would be very fun and pretty easy for the VIP guests to pull off.  It would be easy to plan, the designated audience member would get a quick orientation/rehearsal before the show started, the option to wear some appropriate article of costume, and a cheat sheet script to read their line(s) off of.

We even have a variety of this extra special cameo performance reward for couples.  You could impersonate New York State Governor Franklyn Delano Roosevelt and his wife Eleanor or Newspaper Magnate William Randolph Hearst and his paramour Marion Davies:

Pledge $1,500 or more

SUPER CELEBRITY CHESHIRE CAT SPECTACULAR FOR TWO:

Double VIP Cameo performance in Speakeasy! *

You and your special someone (of any gender) can be part of the show together!

As NY Governor Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt or William Randolph Hearst and Marion Davies (your choice!), attending the Wonderland nightclub, sitting in On Stage Table Seats (2 free tickets). Get chatted up by Masters of Ceremonies Chet Cheshire and dance with the Tweedle Sisters!

PLUS Booklet, Poster and 2 T-shirts

Plus Songs, Postcard; Program and Online Thanks

(Opening Night or Final Show VIP Party for an additional $500)

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So there we are.  Fun, colorful, reward options at every level of giving.  Of course the main reason to pledge at Kickstarter is to support the Speakeasy Project and spread the word.  We thank everybody who already has as well as all who will still do!  See you there!
v6 - HL hamilton lodge ball pic

About dannyashkenasi

I'm a composer with over 30 years experience creating music theater. I'm also an actor, writer, director, producer, teacher and general enthusiast for the arts.
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