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Two powerful new shows - a Brooklyn abolitionist musical and a folk opera about Harriet Tubman - that portray the struggle for freedom. Read more

Brooklyn, NY Theater
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This project was successfully funded on February 19, 2014.

Two powerful new shows - a Brooklyn abolitionist musical and a folk opera about Harriet Tubman - that portray the struggle for freedom.

Brooklyn, NY Theater
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About this project

LINES OF FREEDOM

Harriet Tubman, James Pennington, John Brown, Henry Ward Beecher, William Still. Names from dusty history books come alive on stage in two exciting musical works that bring us close to the events that changed our nation forever. 

Lines of Freedom, a co-production of the Irondale Ensemble Project and American Opera Projects, will feature 

  • The premiere of Nigerian-American composer/librettist Nkeiru Okoye's folk opera: Harriet Tubman: When I Crossed That Line to Freedom. In this chamber version we follow Harriet's journey from her roots as a slave in Maryland to her role as a conductor of the Underground Railroad determined to rescue her family.
  • Color Between the Lines, a musical created and performed by the Irondale Ensemble about the abolitionist struggle in Brooklyn during the decade leading up to the Civil War. The music spans Rock, Folk, Jazz, Soul and R&B.

Performances will take place in Fort Greene, Brooklyn at the Irondale Center, a transformational theater space created out of the ruins of a Civil War-era Sunday School.

Why now?

150 years ago Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. 100 years ago, Harriet Tubman died. These anniversaries reinvigorated a national dialogue about slavery and oppression that continues today. Lines of Freedom consists of two stories that take the dust off history and speak directly to this struggle and keep the conversation alive.

How will my gift be used?

Your tax-deductible contribution goes directly to our creators -  composer, Nkeiru Okoye, our hardworking casts of actors and singers, talented instrumentalists from the Harlem Chamber Orchestra, local chorus members, and technical artists. Your gift will subsidize performances for local schoolchildren and allow to us to extend marketing and outreach strategies so more people will hear about the shows.

Who are you people anyway?

AOP and The Irondale Ensemble Project are neighboring organizations in the BAM cultural district in Brooklyn. We have a combined 55 year track record of telling stories through theater and music. Stories that have gone from Brooklyn to audiences across America, Europe, and Asia. Learn more about us at www.irondale.org and www.operaprojects.org .

So when is it?

February 20-March 1, 2014. The shows run in rep at The Irondale Center in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. A complete schedule, tickets and info can be found at http://irondale.org/LinesOfFreedom

And keep visiting this page for updates on additional Lines of Freedom events around the city and online!

What If I Have No Idea How Kickstarter Works?

If you're not familiar with Kickstarter or how it will work, here's a brief overview (or you can read the official one, here). For the next 30 days, you'll be able to make pledges to help support this project, ranging from $1 to whatever you can afford without your spouse/parent/financial advisor slapping you. For your pledge, you can select one of the reward packages—listed to the right—of equal or lesser value to your pledge. You can always pledge more than the minimum to get a reward if you want (and for some packages, you'll need to do so if it must be shipped internationally). Your credit card or other account will not actually be charged at the time you make your pledge, and you can change your mind right up to the final deadline. If the final deadline comes and we've reached our goal, then everyone gets charged the amount they pledged at once and we begin putting together all those nifty rewards for you (along with producing our show, of course). But if for some reason we don't meet our goal, then the whole thing is called off. No one gets charged, no fees are applied, everyone just keeps their money. Of course, if we fail to meet the goal, then no one gets any rewards, either, and some of those rewards are pretty cool, in our highly biased opinion.

Is my donation tax-deductible?

The Irondale Ensemble Project and American Opera Projects are both IRS recognized 501(c)3 non-profit organizations. All donations are tax-deductible, minus the expenses of any rewards you receive. If the project meets its Kickstarter goal, you will receive a letter declaring your donation once we have received all funds.

Your donation is securely processed by Kickstarter through our Amazon account. This means that there's a 10% transaction fee to cover credit card fees, bank fees, and other processing costs. Please consider chipping in an additional 10 cents on every dollar so that the full value of your donation amount goes to this project.

Lines of Freedom poster
Lines of Freedom poster

Risks and challenges

Every time a work of art goes beyond the "idea stage" there are enormous risks: will it work? will the audience come? are there sufficient resources to turn these ideas into reality? AOP and Irondale deal with these risks on a daily basis. The prospect of failure always looms. All we can say is that we approach this work with integrity, determination and the most talented group of artists we can find. No project is devoid of obstacles, but as you sit in the audience you will know that you helped surmount one of the major ones -- the need for adequate funds.

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FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    4 backers

    Our Thank You & Your Reward: A Digital Stationery Thank You ||| Your Name on the Lines of Freedom Website ||| A Desktop Background

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    11 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Exclusive mp3 from our Harriet Tubman Opera ||| All Rewards at the $5 Level

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $20 or more

    26 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Exclusive mp3s from Both Shows ||| All Rewards at the $10 level

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    8 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: A page of sheet music from our Harriet Tubman opera, signed by the composer and artists. Perfect for framing! ||| All Rewards at the $20 Level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    15 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: An original cast recording CD of Color Between the Lines ||| 1 ticket to the Performance of Your Choice ||| All Rewards at the $30 Level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    2 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Limited Edition Harriet Tubman Poster, Signed by the Tubman Cast and Composer ||| Irondale T-Shirt ||| All Rewards at the $50 Level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    19 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: 2 VIP tickets to the Performance of Your Choice ||| All Rewards at the $75 Level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    1 backer

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Limited Edition Lines of Freedom Poster Signed by the Artists ||| All Rewards at the $100 Level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    5 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: 4 VIP tickets to the Performances of Your Choice ||| An Irondale Theater Membership ||| All Rewards at the $150 level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    2 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Invitation for you and a guest to one or both Opening Night Receptions with the Artists (Color reception, Feb 20 / Tubman reception Feb 21) ||| All Rewards at the $250 Level

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $750 or more

    0 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Personal "Sound Pad"- In the manner of the creation process used in The Color Between the Lines, the cast will improvise a song about any event in the life of an audience member - as important or trivial
    as you wish. (Great way to propose Marriage or announce a Major Life Event.) You may record the song on your Personal Recording Device or cell phone. ||| All rewards at the $500 level

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    2 backers

    Our Thank You and Your Reward: Cast Members from Our Shows Will Perform At Your Home For You and Your Closest Friends (NYC only) ||| All rewards at the $500 level

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (37 days)