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150th anniversary of the First Minnesota regiment's charge to the death at Gettysburg. A dramatic musical about 262 against 1,600.

 Production Project Summary 

Free public performances

          First Minnesota is a true story drama presented in a musical theatre format.  It is the story of the famous charge of the First Minnesota regiment, who sacrificed most of their troops to help turn the tide at the battle of Gettysburg.  262 Minnesotans made a charge to the death against 1,600 confederate soldiers in order to gain five precious minutes needed for the union cannons to get into their positions and hold onto the higher ground.  215 became casualties, more than 80% of the regiment, which was the highest loss in military history.  The play continues with the famous “Pickett’s charge”, where 15,000 southern soldiers marched upon the northern troops and an additional 23 Minnesotans lost their lives.

          The audience will not be charged to see this production; it will be free to the public.  The historic an educational value of the play will be immense.  The public will view this production at 5 public park stages, a historic professional theater, a historic courthouse ballroom, and several college stage venues.  The viewing public will take pride and be enriched because of their awareness of the courageous First Minnesota story.  This is an emotional, dramatic, entertaining musical play, providing a history filled experience.  It will memorialize an important chapter in United States history while honoring the role that Minnesotan's played in the American Civil War. 

          The play has already been written, composed and researched over a three-year span.  A multi-track demo of the music has been recorded.  Other production considerations such as props, costumes and setting materials have been listed and sketched out.  Schedules, budgets and staffing have been compiled.  So as you can see much of the work has already been completed, which leaves you to simply sponsor this endeavor. Now, it is time to share the story with the public on the 150th anniversary of the First Minnesota's charge to the death at Gettysburg.  A video and audio recording of the production will be created to insure the enduring value and will preserve the story.  Funding will go toward financing the cost of costumes, props, rental and permits of the performance spaces, show and audience insurance, leasing the wireless microphone system and the publicity ads in newspapers.  The cast, artistic staff and crew will all receive a small stipend to basically cover gasoline costs for all the rehearsals and show destinations.   a detailed outline of the budget is included below.

 This is an emotional and powerful story, with music and lyrics intertwined with the action.  Beyond the historical facts of that battle, the play covers the wants, desires, dreams, and daily living of the soldiers.  The issues of North vs South are further explored with the introduction of the “rebel” character.  And, the format of the production is occasionally presented in split scenes on stage, creatively merging the lives of the women back home with the lives of the soldiers on the field.  This production is also peppered with tender, pensive, and at times humorous moments with some scenes done in a flashback format.  The cast is 8 men and 3 women (double casting).  The orchestra is 7 instruments of back-up music on a CD.  (Some of the song excerpts are in the background of the Kickstarter video.)  All the staging is simplistic, stylistically suggestive and creative.  But most of all, this is a piece of theatre with Heart!  It is sure to move any audience with its energy, creative staging, mesmerizing music, and sheer power of the true story, which was created over a century ago by the soldiers of the First Minnesota.

The proposed time frame for presenting this production will be during July 2013.  The charge at Gettysburg occurred on July 2nd1863 and the 150th anniversary of this heroic act will be in July 2013.


All play performances will be free to the public.
All proposed budgets are modest and minimal to help ensure this mission is viable, financially equitable, reasonable, affordable, fair to the artists and fair to the Kickstarter supporters. All total amounts have been researched, confirmed, and reserved. It is a realistic but stripped down bare bones budget.  I believe this tight budget will increase the likelihood of achieving our financial goal of $18,700. This will be possible, thanks to you, and all kickstarter donors.

Park Permits for performances (5 park stages)---$695.00

Stage Rental for performance (5 indoor venues)---$1,740.00

Public Performance Insurance (10 shows)---$1,500.00
$110.00 for each show. $400.00 for 11 actors, all shows

Wireless Microphone Sound System Rental:---$2,400.00
For one week of tech and three weeks run (10 shows).

P.R. 3X5 newspaper ads ---$2,265.00
(1 large metropolitan newspaper, $1680. 5 small community papers, $585)

Printing & Mailing ---$1,200.00
Play programs, post cards, survey cards, flyers/mailers, certificates, postage.

Designer, Technical Director ---$800.00
Carpenter, Set & Props builder, Show Set up & Run.

Set: ---$400.00
(Materials to build and found items purchased) Home: 1 window & curtain, lamp, chair and table for Mother/fiancée’. School: maps, 9 chairs, 2 window and curtains. ½ decayed whiskey barrel. 3 rocks (1 weight barring, large). 2 logs. 1 stump. Broken fence fragment. 2 earth mounds. Tumbleweeds and brush units.

Props: ---$300.00
(Materials to build and found items purchased) 7 musket guns. 7 haversacks. 7 canteens. 1 sword. Books and pens. Candles. 2 flags (MN, US). Cloth pieces (water, school, robes, etc.). 12 apples. 2 handkerchiefs.

Costume Designer, Builder ---$500.00

Costumes: ---$1,200.00
(Materials for building and found items purchased.) 6 soldiers -(standard: boots, pants, shirts, jackets, hats, straps & belts). General Hancock -(Full uniform, including high boots and long coat). Rebel –(standard soldier) Colvil, soldier -(full Colonel uniform, and standard fill-in the soldier) Reverend. Schoolteacher. 2 Schoolgirls. 6 Schoolboy overlays. 1 full Schoolboy. Mother. Fiancé. Sister.

11 actors ---$3,300.00
(Per actor = $300.00 (stipend) gas. $150.00 each for 14-three hour rehearsals; 42 hours. And 4 Q to Q, final tech & dress rehearsals; 10 hours. $150.00 each for 10 shows. $15.00 each per show.)

Assistant Director, Stage Manager ---$500.00
Show set up & run ($300.00 for work process, $200.00 for the 10 shows)

Video Documentation ---$30.00
Digital video tape.

Kickstarter 5% Fee ---$935.00
Amazon payments 5% Fee ---$935,00

Grand Total: $18,700.00

I want to be sure we reach our funding goal.  Therefore, I have set the budget at a modest but realistic cost level.  To keep production costs to a minimum, I am donating all my time and energy to the project.  I am “doing” free, not budgeting for or charging for:

Director ---$0
Music Director ---$0
P.A. equipment (amp, speakers, mixer) ---$0
Video camera ---$0
Portable MR-8 recording gear ---$0
Production Coordinator ---$0

If we get extra funding:
If we go above our financial goal, 3 indoor and 2 outdoor performance venues are also on hold currently and we will expand the production for those shows and increase the ads and newspaper coverage. After that, all costumes, props, set pieces would be improved upon. If we go beyond that, fancier inserts and higher quality discs will be produced for the soundtrack CDs and performance DVDs. Beyond that, extra stipends would be made available for the hard-working cast and crew. Beyond that, some of the rewards would be beefed up for the kickstarter donors. And, it would be nice to have a 5 to 7 member pit orchestra become a reality, if the kick starter donors put the budget way over the top.

All proposed budgets are modest and minimal to help ensure this mission is viable, financially equitable, reasonable, affordable, fair to the artists and fair to the Kickstarter supporters. All total amounts have been researched, confirmed, and reserved. It is a realistic but stripped down bare bones budget.

(The grand total amount is $18,700.00)
(The amount needed for all show expenditures is: $16,830.00)
(The amount needed for kickstarter and Amazon fees is $1,870.00)


·      11 actors  (8 male, 3 female) Double casting 15 character roles.

·      Director/Music Director, Project Coordinator

·      Assistant Director/Stage Manager, PR asst.

·      Technical Director, Carpenter, Set up & run.                                         

·      Costume Designer, Builder

Production Work Plan and Timetable

The scope of the work plan and timetable from initial meetings and rehearsals to performances are flexible except for the final production dates.

·      December 2012-  Secure all venue payments and permits; colleges, parks, pro theatres. Finalize the performance date commitments.  Make payments for all show/audience insurance.


·      January 2013-  Continue with final payments and permits.  Reconfirm dates with all 10 performance spaces.   Interviewing for staff positions begins.  Preparation for auditions.  (Callboard PR notices for actors)


·      February 2013

       *Staffing process completed: 



       *Stage manager/assistant director, PR asst.

       *Finalization of all staff planning.

       *Staff work process begins.

       *Directorial concepts established.

       *Costume requirements and designs begin.      

       *Set-prop requirements and designs begin.

       *Scheduling and PR requirements established. 

       *Music score  fully transcribed.

       **Auditions for actors begins.  Call backs, Casting, finalize commitments.


·      March, 2013-  Full company meeting:  Production concept and entire schedule laid out.  Read through of the script.  Sheet music and backup orchestra music CDs distributed.  Costume measurements taken.  Contact information shared.


·      April 2013-  Rehearsals begin:  Twice weekly, alternating acting and music rehearsals.  During the four weeks of April, four acting rehearsals and four music rehearsals.  (Total- 8).  Technical, building and costuming process ongoing.


·      May 2013-  Rehearsals:  Twice-weekly, one week with one acting and one music rehearsal.  Two weeks  with four combined music and acting rehearsals.  (Total- 6)  All PR work established and news ads submitted and paid for.


·      June 2013-  Dress rehearsals and final tech/dress rehearsals.  With Q-to-Q rehearsal, two dress tech rehearsals, and one final run-through.  (Total- 4)  18 rehearsals total.


·      July 2013-  (July 2-21)  Productions of the play are presented and performed:  2 large city park stages in Minneapolis, 3 large city park stages in St. Paul.  3 Indoor theatres in Minneapolis, 2 indoor theatres in St. Paul.


·      August 2013-  Evaluation of the production, compilation of audience surveys, completion of video and audio recordings. Final mailing of all Kickstarter  reward items.  Documentation of budget, final report .    


Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

*Risks and challenges
There are risks and challenges that come with mounting any production. One of the challenges will be assembling all the personnel for the show and essentially creating a small theater company. I will function as a production supervisor to ensure that everything comes off smoothly. My task will be keeping all the oars in the water so everything comes in on schedule. I have worn this hat many times before in multiple capacities. My personal bio reflects my qualifications to guide this project to a successful conclusion.
A checklist of the many risks and challenges is as follows:

*Mailing all kickstarter or rewards.
*Secure all venue payments and permits; colleges, parks, pro theaters.
*Make payments for all show/audience insurance.
*Post notices, hold auditions, callbacks and final casting.
*Assemble Technical concerns; scenery, props, costumes, sound, etc.
*Submit and pay for all newspaper ads and submit all arts calendar listings.
* Conducting all rehearsals while troubleshooting any problems.
*Final run through, Q to Q and tech/dress rehearsals.
*Show performances.

Each one of these processes has many small detailed steps internally. There are many other things, not listed, to stay on top of to keep the boat afloat with all oars in the water. These are the many challenges. The risk is not keeping on top of everything, staying on schedule, or communicating clearly. But I'm confident that we will overcome all of these challenges and have a very successful production.


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

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    SUPPORTER: A "THANK YOU' e-mail will be sent to you, expressing gratitude and thankfulness for your help in supporting this worthwhile project. A brief description of the project will be given as well, so you can share it with your friends. This "thank you" will be very complementary toward you and if you wish, it will be shared on Facebook.

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    SUPPORTER: Includes the above thank you, plus a nice "SHOW POSTCARD" will be sent to you. This will be personally signed by many of the cast members. This will be a nice souvenir to show others how you supported this production.

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    SPECIAL THANKS Includes the above thank you and show postcard, plus your name will be printed in the show PLAY PROGRAM with special thanks for your support to the production. You will also receive an MP3 show sampler of several demo songs from the musical. The sample songs will be sent electronically to your Facebook or e-mail. Only the MP3 will be sent in late December. Play them for your friends to let them know about the project that you are sponsoring.

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    EXTRA CONTRIBUTION. ”CORPORAL” Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus your name will appear in the printed show program for giving extra contribution of financial support to the production. The program layout will make it clear that this is a higher level of funding support. You will also receive a SHOW SOUNDTRACK CD. This will be a copy of the songs from the completed musical, with all songs recorded from various live productions.

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    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER. ”SERGEANT” Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus you will receive a page of sheet music from the MUSICAL SCORE, signed by the composer and is suitable for framing. You will also receive a limited edition COMPILATION CD which is a collection of songs from the composer's 5 albums. These two items will be sent out at the pre-production date.

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    PRODUCER. ”LIEUTENANT” Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus you will receive a completed copy of the SHOW DVD. You will be able to watch and enjoy the entire musical that you helped to mount with your unselfish support. See the entire musical as it was presented in front of live audiences. You will also receive a PAGE from the SCRIPT. It will be autographed by the actors involved in the dialogue from that page and signed by the playwright as well. This will be a nice collectable.

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    SPONSORING PRODUCER. ”CAPTAIN” Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus you will receive a VINTAGE STYLE CERTIFICATE honoring your support of the production. You will want to frame and hang this nostalgic looking document, which will include details of the 1st Minnesota’s role at Gettysburg, aspects of the musical production, and your role as sponsoring producer. You will also receive a special CAST PHOTO, including signed autographs with notes of thanks.

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    OPERATIONS PRODUCER. "COLONEL" Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus you will be acknowledged at the end of CURTAIN CALL. The cast and or director will announce your name and have you stand so the audience can include you in their applause and appreciation. You will also share in a CAST PHOTO OP after the show. This picture will be a great testament to your commitment to the production with you surrounded by the cast in period costumes. You will want to frame it to hang on your wall. Transportation is up to you. If you can't make it, the photo will be sent to you with the cast surrounding a life-size cutout, with your name on it, for the photo op.

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    EXECUTIVE PRODUCER. "GENERAL" Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus you will be invited to a CAST PARTY after the performance as a special guest. You will have to supply your own transportation and the party date will depend on your scheduled appearance. A special SHOW BANNER, signed by the cast and crew, will be presented to you at the party. The banner will be sent if you can't make it. This is a thank you for your special funding.

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    PRINCIPAL PRODUCER. "FIVE-STAR GENERAL" Includes all of the aforementioned rewards plus the playwright/composer will personally treat you to a WONDERFUL DINNER at St. Paul's oldest family owned Italian restaurant. The exceptional meal will honor you with gratitude for your great contribution to the musical. You will also receive a COMMEMORATIVE MEDAL after the meal. Supply your own transportation and if you can't make it the medal will be sent to you. This is a special thank you for your significant funding.

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Funding period

- (31 days)