About this project
Cassandra, The Musical
Cassandra, The Musical is a sung-through musical that examines how any one person can be a “god” of their day, but no more or no less a petulant child if they live their life out of balance and forget their humanity. These "Gods" include musicians, politicians, religious figures, and corporate titans. It posits that the ancient Greek gods were mortals that had undue influence and power over their contemporaries, as they do today, and without the fear and respect of "mortals," have diminished power over their world. See below for plot details.
Our fundraising goal is to produce a full-length production concert at either Proctors Theater in Schenectady, NY or Troy Music Hall in Troy, NY, depending upon the availability.
In order to bring this performance and recording to life, we will need $22,000 to fully fund this exciting project. We hope that you will be instrumental in helping us to reach that goal. Our venture cannot move forward and succeed without your support.
Where the Money Goes
We will assemble a cast of some of the Capital District’s (upstate, NY) finest actors, singers, choral groups, and musicians to perform a “standing” concert version of the libretto (costumes, with limited sets and choreography).
The libretto (words/lyrics) and music have been composed by Patrick Longo. However, Cassandra, The Musical utilizes several forms of Western
music to reinforce themes in the play, as well as to show the
progression of Cassandra’s life through three lifetimes in ancient
Turkey, Great Depression-era, NY, and contemporary San Francisco.
This periodic music includes opera, classical, blues, jazz, ragtime, barbershop quartet, gospel, rock, broadway, club, and pop music. The complexity of the music requires us to spend nearly 50% of the funding on hiring professional music staff to complete the play. We will take his script and music and will need to pay for and accomplish the following:
$ 6,000 Rehearsal/Performance Space (concert hall must be reserved in advance)
$ 6,000 for Music Transcription
$ 4,000 for the Musical Score
$ 4,000 for Musicians, as well as concert video and audio recording
$ 1,000 for Kickstarter fees (they take 5%).
All other costs will be offset by ticket sales, the author's personal investment and time/materials donations.
Finally, we will book a professional sound engineer for a studio quality recording of the music and vocals to promote and secure funding for a full production in the future, including funds raised from ticket and merchandise sales and a new round of investment from theatrical producers.
Cassandra’s story starts in ancient Troy during the Trojan War. Beautiful and youthful, she attracted the affections of many men. Apollo, the Greek god of healing, music, and prophecy comes to her ready to make a wager. If Cassandra gives herself to him, he will grant her the gift of prophecy.
She is fascinated by the possibilities, but when Apollo grants her wish, she sees a grim future, including the downfall of her beloved city of Troy, and her own grisly death in a foreign land. She quickly realizes her folly, and when Apollo visits her, she scorns him. Apollo is furious and places a curse upon her: she can keep her prophetic powers, yet no one will believe a word that leaves her lips. Her family, friends, and fellow citizens of Troy will brand her a raving lunatic.
But Cassandra is given one saving grace: during her trial on Mt. Olympus, the Goddess Athena, knowing Cassandra is already fated a horrible death, convinces the Gods to grant Cassandra two more lifetimes, two more chances to make things right and break the curse.
After failing to convince her fellow Trojans that the Trojan Horse hides soldiers that will sack their city, Cassandra is sought by many invaders as a spoil of war, and causes a dispute between Agamemnon and Ajax the Lesser, who has angered the Goddess Athena by dragging Cassandra from Athena’s temple while she was a suppliant, a major offense to the Gods.
Agamemnon and Ajax’s spat begins a love quadrangle between Cassandra, Ajax the Lesser, Agamemnon, and Helen of Troy, the "face that launched a thousand ships" and the cause of the ten-year war. Their choices and actions follow them through two reincarnations in the Great Depression era, NY and in current day San Francisco. Apollo and Athena follow them as they hold a big stake in a contemporary clash of the titans, as Cassandra attempts to break the curse Apollo placed upon her, and ultimately change humankind's belief system.
Cassandra prophesies the end of the world, and must convince humans of their own free will and, accordingly, their ability to either destroy themselves and the planet or to shape a better future. In her epic journey, she must summon the courage to believe in herself, to defy the Gods, break free of the curse, and unite humankind in one purpose: world peace. The fate of the world is in her human hands.
The Author's "Prophecy"
Cassandra's story parallel's my need to have people believe in me enough to back my story.
Since 2001, one year before I left San Francisco to join my growing family in NY, I told everyone I could that I would produce this musical. Like Cassandra, my words often fell on deaf ears. Who could blame them? It's been 13 long years since I conceived the story and wrote the first several songs.
Now, it is time to fulfill my promise to all that would listen, all who doubted and all that believed. Your help in backing this production will fulfill a self-fulfilling "prophecy," a true once in a lifetime dream come true.
All dreams are prophetic in their own right when there are people willing and determined to make the vision a reality. Thank you for taking the time and spending your hard-earned money to help me bring the dream to life!
Risks and challenges
To minimize risk, we will record and mix most of the music so live actors can sing with the recording. This removes the obstacle of relying on expensive and busy professional orchestral musicians, should they fall through. This also allows us to quickly fulfill some of the Kickstarter rewards.
Having produced a play in San Francisco named "The Curse of Funston Munley," I understand that what can go wrong will go wrong, as nearly everything on that production did go wrong, yet the play was still a success by my and my production teams' standards. Prior to the show, a friend advised me to tell people I was going to do it, pick a date and a time, book the space, and charge forward with everything I had without ever second-guessing or looking back. And that's what my team and I did.
The other experience I would rely on is my wedding. A wedding is a big production with many, many (did I say "many?") moving parts. Again, you pick a day, set a budget, set the standards, knock off many little and big goals along the way, and juggle and cajole the people who can inevitably become your worst nightmare (even the ones you trust the most). You map out the specific time required to prepare and the goals that need to be accomplished along the way, invite the guests, promise a great show and deliver.
I will not over promise and under deliver. I prefer to under-promise and deliver outside of peoples assumptions and expectations. That's why I've chosen s standing production concert, because it is manageable for many reasons. A full production can easily go over-budget, has far greater moving parts and vested interests, and requires many more collaborators.
This first production will allow us to seek full investors for a full show, which is the long-term goal. I will happily answer any concerns from any of my potential backers regarding my ability to fulfill the rewards and the promised production.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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