The Kickstarter Blog

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  1. Ten Creators, One Question: What Was the Craziest Moment?

    Sometimes, something wild and unexpected happens between the moment you click "Launch" and the moment the project you created comes to fruition. 

    Here's what ten creators had to say when we asked them about the craziest moment of their Kickstarter experience.

    darkpony, Drawing for Dollars (aka the first-ever Kickstarter project to reach its funding goal): Well, one thing unexpected is Kickstarter blew up and went crazy and became the most amazing thing since sliced bread! And one day about three years after I finished Drawing for dollars I got a Google alert from some post that Yancey [Strickler] posted about how my project was the first completed project and I was like, "Oh yeah, that was me!"

    Tori Bush, Swoon's Musical Architecture for New Orleans: Thurston Moore (of Sonic Youth) and New Orleans musician and veteran Music Box performer Rob Cambre collaborated on a series of recordings. Rob and Thurston met almost twenty years ago and have always spoken of collaboration. New Orleans Airlift was delighted to bring this union to fruition and to give them [our project space] The Music Box as their playground. We watched and listened in awe as they moved through the instruments of our town. This was an amazing and completely beautiful moment.

    Peter Platzer, ArduSat: Seeing the rocket liftoff from Japan carrying Ardusat onboard was an amazing high for me, and our team. To see something we conceived of, from drawings on scraps of paper at its inception, to space was awe-inspiring. And in just over 12 months! Unreal.

    Ted Southern, Final Frontier Design's 3G Space Suit: It was really cool to get an email from an early aviator/space suit developer Wiley Post's granddaughter. She was very encouraging and supportive. Also, we were blown away by an international pledge for a suit, which is nearly impossible to deliver. Space suits are considered weapons by the US Dept of State, so their export is closely controlled. However, he understood the restrictions and genuinely was interested in supporting our cause.

    Max Temkin, Cards Against Humanity: The craziest moment was seeing the project funded almost immediately; Kickstarter let us know pretty quickly that Cards Against Humanity was going to be a pretty special project. It was also pretty crazy to see the first games get unloaded from a truck onto my parents' lawn.

    Brian Dwyer, Pizza Brain Pizza Museum: When the head of PR at Pizza Hut in Dallas, Texas called me personally to congratulate us on a job well done, and said if we ever need anything, not to be a stranger. That, and actually opening the doors to the public. Nearly 1,600 people showed up to the grand opening. Not exaggerating. We didn't know what the hell to do with such an overwhelming positive reception! I doubt I'll ever witness anything like that again. Such a fantastic celebration of life.

    Molly Dilworth, Paintings for Satellites: It's hard to choose just one. The day Terry Burger took me up in his beautiful little plane to shoot the pool I painted in Salina, Kansas was pretty special. His plane was used to shoot photos in WWII, so I was able to shoot out the open window while we were flying. After I got my shots he flew me up to the wind turbine farms in Wilson, which were so alien it was like flying through a science fiction movie.

    Robert Douglass, Open Goldberg: Kimiko Ishizaka (the pianist, and my wife) and I had gone shopping late one night during the fundraising, after working long and hard all day to get the project going. While we were at the store, news of our project got posted on the website All of a sudden my iPhone started beeping and buzzing with new backers. Shopping took twice as long because we had to check the pledge level every aisle: Vegetables - 5%, Milk - 15%, Cereal - 23%, Wine - 31% and so on. That's when we first really understood that we were going to succeed, that we'd get that opportunity to make the recording and score, that people understood and believed in what we were doing.

    Paola Prestini, Oceanic Verses: People from our Kickstarter campaign kept in touch with the piece! Many who I did not know. I also loved the comments, bad and good, and especially from people who said they typically did not love opera, but really "got" Oceanic Verses. I love the sense that it was the people's opera. It represented trained and untrained synthesis, which is something I am very interested in.

    David Lang, OpenROV: The craziest moment was racing against the clock to get the kits out before Christmas in 2012. Eric was in Antarctica, so I threw a "party", meaning I invited a few dozen friends, fed them beer and put them to work. Miraculously, we finished the job.

  2. Interview: Allison Orr of Forklift Danceworks

    Allison Orr, the choreographer whose work was the subject of Andrew Garrison’s fascinating documentary Trash Dance, creates massive-scale dance productions that often involve people with no background in dance movement (such as public power and sanitation workers). On behalf of Forklift Danceworks, where she is artistic director, Allison has run two Kickstarter projects (here and here). We asked her a couple of questions.

    When did you start doing public works on a massive scale?

    The Trash Project (documented by Andrew Garrison’s Trash Dance) was the first piece that we produced for 1,000+ people. We did The Trash Project for the first time in 2009. Before 2009, I had done large-scale outdoor events, but those dances saw audiences of about 500 or so. So The Trash Project was a huge leap forward in terms of scale.

    What are you working on now?

    I am working on a series of dances with baseball teams. The first performance goes up in May with the Huston-Tillotson Ram’s on historic Downs Field in Austin, TX, and this dance is exploring Negro League Baseball history in Austin (Downs Field was home to the Austin Black Senators - one of Austin’s Negro League teams). I am also traveling to Kyoto, Japan in September to create a dance with the Women’s Professional Baseball League. I can’t wait!

    What’s the next project for Forklift Danceworks?

    We are in the planning stages for some really exciting projects with two City of Austin departments (like our previous projects with Austin Energy and Austin Resource Recovery/Sanitation). We are continuing to think and strategize about how to deepen our exploration of community-based dance making. The work never ends!

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