Since 1989, The VORTEX has been a hub for cutting-edge theatre and performance and home to a vibrant and thriving community of artists. Since moving to our current location in 1994, we have been working with an old rock and roll lighting system purchased with money raised from Annie Sprinkle’s first Austin show. It’s a “Frankenstein System” that has been repaired multiple times. It mostly doesn’t work. We have been renting equipment for every show and hemorrhaging funds we would pay the artists. The VORTEX is turning 25 this January! For her birthday, we’d love to give her a new, state-of-the-art, industry-standard light board and dimmers with energy-efficient LED instruments to keep her going for 25 more.
The VORTEX will install the new lighting system for the world premiere of FOR FEAR THE GLASS MAY SHATTER. This new opera marks The VORTEX’s first production in the prestigious Fusebox Festival. Later in 2014, the new lighting system illuminates SPIRIT, funded by the National Endowment for the Arts and the culmination of the Elemental series.
With the help of award-winning lighting designer, Jason Amato, we have determined that in order to bring our venue up to contemporary standards, we need the following:
1. A new lighting console. Jason once made one with the dimmers we all use in our living rooms, two-by-fours nailed together, a lot of solder, and a ruler. We don’t want him to do that again. Ever!
2. Dimmers. These provide the power to the lights and tell them how brightly to shine. Half of our old dimmers are short-circuited. The other half are...moody.
3. LED instruments. These new lighting instruments consume up to 75% less electricity, and will also save us considerable time and money. One LED instrument can seamlessly transition from one color to another. Rather than putting up three sets of lights for cool, warm, and bright washes, we can do it all with one set. This means way less time on the ladder for Jason and Tamara for every single show. Higher efficiency, safety, AND sustainability. Nice!
4. Additional instruments. We need to replace some of those specialty instruments that saw their first show during the Kennedy administration. (Really!) Tamara’s good for spanking these fickle beasts occasionally, but it’s not the safest.
We have already raised 15,000 dollars toward this goal and we need your help to raise the rest! After that, EVERY production housed in The VORTEX will enjoy the benefits of a new and improved lighting system. HOW AWESOME IS THAT!?
Please support this birthday gift for The VORTEX.
Thanks for reading and being part of The VORTEX for the last 25 years. We hope you will join us for the next 25!
Risks and challenges
We have already invested funds into updating the wiring in the booth and the other non-electric hardware there. One of the challenges may be that we have to hire a professional electrician to install some elements, rather than rely on VORTEX staff and volunteers. We have accounted for this financially and look forward to installing our new lighting system! With your help, we WILL make this happen in 2014.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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