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written by Kathryn Belle Long and Michael Abraham
399 backers pledged $42,800 to help bring this project to life.
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$42,800

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A message from Kathryn and Mickey

Welcome to our Folk Opera Kickstarter page. With your help, we will be able to finish our most ambitious musical project to date! Our Folk Opera will combine the unique sound and perspective we have developed as experienced musicians and performers with a socially relevant storyline and a score intentionally composed with traditional folk instrumentation. At this time, the writing process is nearly complete. This is just step one, however, as we prepare to record, engineer, and promote the album.  We couldn't be more excited about the creatively challenging work that lies ahead. We can't wait to have the finished album and artwork to ship off to you and present to the world! 

Our Folk Opera idea began three years ago in the studio as we were recording our second album "Till We Know Better."  While building sound effects for some of the story centered songs, we laughed about how fun it would be to write a complete concept album in our style of acoustic folk. Like many of  our musical heroes before us had written "rock operas", we jokingly decided that the world needed a "folk opera", and we would be just the folks to write it. How were we to know that our pie in the sky idea would turn into the most creatively fueled project of our lives? 

We have spent the last two and a half years formulating the characters and storyline, composing thematically motivated music, and brainstorming ways to make the Folk Opera the best it can be. This included putting together a team full of award-winning and critically acclaimed musicians, artists, engineers, and producers. Our goal is to deliver a concept album that combines our love of theater with our passion for songwriting and folk music. The Folk Opera is driven by character development, socially relevant subject matter, soaring melodic themes, and compelling visual art.   

Here are a couple images from our January trip out to GNAH Studios Inc in Los Angeles where we did our first Folk Opera artwork meeting.  

First meeting in LA with our Folk Opera artist, Avi Renick
First meeting in LA with our Folk Opera artist, Avi Renick
At GNAH Studios Inc. in Los Angeles
At GNAH Studios Inc. in Los Angeles

Our award winning artist, Avi Renick, will be creating original artwork for all the characters and locations in the story. One of our creative Kickstarter reward tiers is to have you send our artist a picture of yourself to be rendered into Folk Opera art. Check out the "rewards" section of our Kickstarter page for all information about our rewards tiers.  

We had a blast recording our Kickstarter video with Marcel Ardans of Lessons with Marcel. Marcel is a talented YouTuber and we are proud to have him on our Folk Opera team.  

Filming our Kickstarter video
Filming our Kickstarter video

We are also reuniting with our friend Rob Diaz de Villegas from WFSU-TV. Rob is responsible for asking us to write the television Theme Song for Local Routes which went on to win a Suncoast Emmy Award. Rob will be helping us document the creative progress of the Folk Opera. We always enjoy glimpses into our favorite artists' creative methods and feel our supporters will want to see Rob's documentary about "the making of" the Folk Opera.   

meeting with Rob Diaz de Villegas of WFSU-TV
meeting with Rob Diaz de Villegas of WFSU-TV
with Rob Diez de Villegas at the 2016 Suncoast Emmy Awards
with Rob Diez de Villegas at the 2016 Suncoast Emmy Awards

We are thrilled to work with talented musicians like Cory Walker. We met with Cory down in the Florida Keys to go over his musical role on the Folk Opera.  Cory is world class and we are excited to have his virtuosic touch on the banjo. Here is a picture of Cory listening to Folk Opera demos for the first time.

meeting with Cory Walker in the Florida Keys
meeting with Cory Walker in the Florida Keys

We do plan to take a small break from recording the Folk Opera in July to venture North for our Summer Tour!  New York City, here we come! Visit Belle and The Band for more info on our upcoming tour and performances.

2019 Summer Tour poster
2019 Summer Tour poster

Thank you in advance for contributing to our Folk Opera Kickstarter! Your contributions will go directly into every aspect of bringing this idea to reality. Paying for musicians, studio time, creating sound effects, engineering, and promoting the album will all be made possible by your generous contributions. We will keep you updated of our progress along the way. Folk Opera is about telling a story -- Thank you for helping us tell ours!

Peace and Love,

Mickey and Kathryn

performing at Suwannee Roots Revival
performing at Suwannee Roots Revival

Risks and challenges

With this being our third studio album together, we know to anticipate unexpected risks and challenges. We are fully prepared to take on any roadblocks we encounter along this journey. We are committed to completing our goal in a timely manner and will keep you updated along the way.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1 or more About US$ 1

    Folk Opera Logo Sticker

    Every dollar counts! Donate a dollar or more and pick up an official Folk Opera logo sticker at one of our live shows.

    Includes:
    • Official Folk Opera Logo Sticker
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    17 backers
    $

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    Folk Opera Album (Double Disk)

    Donate $25 or more and pick up a double disk Folk Opera CD at any of our live shows.

    Includes:
    • Folk Opera Album (Double Disk)
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    110 backers
    $

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    Signed Folk Opera Album (Double Disk)

    Includes:
    • Folk Opera Album - Double Disk (signed)
    • Folk Opera Pen
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    Ships to Only United States
    59 backers
    $

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Signed Folk Opera Album (Double Disk)

    This reward tier also includes a copy of the finished Folk Opera Album (signed double disk) along with a Folk Opera shirt and pen!

    Includes:
    • Folk Opera Album - Double Disk (signed)
    • Folk Opera Shirt
    • Folk Opera Pen
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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    85 backers
    $

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    VIP Folk Opera Album Release Tickets (2)

    With this reward tier you receive a signed copy of the Folk Opera album along with a limited edition booklet containing all the original Folk Opera artwork! This tier also includes two VIP Folk Opera Album Release Tickets, a special thank you by name in the album liner notes, and a Folk Opera shirt and pen!

    Includes:
    • Folk Opera Album - Double Disk (signed)
    • Folk Opera Art Booklet
    • VIP Album Release Tickets
    • Liner Note Thank You
    • Folk Opera Shirt
    • Folk Opera Pen
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    34 backers
    $

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    Signed Folk Opera Album - Vinyl Edition

    With this reward tier you will receive a signed copy of the Folk Opera on vinyl! Along with the limited edition vinyl this tier also includes a beautiful book of original Folk Opera artwork and a limited edition signed poster. Next, you will receive two VIP Folk Opera album release tickets, a special thank you by name in the liner notes, and a Folk Opera shirt and pen! If you have no way of playing the beautiful vinyl copy we will find a way to hook you up with the CD as well!

    Includes:
    • Folk Opera Album - Vinyl
    • Folk Opera Art Booklet
    • Folk Opera Poster
    • Liner Note Thank You
    • VIP Album Release Tickets
    • Folk Opera Shirt
    • Folk Opera Pen
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    9 backers
    $

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    You become a character

    At this tier you can actually become part of the Folk Opera! Send us a photograph of yourself and our artist, Avi Renick, will use your image to create a tertiary character in the Folk Opera artwork. This reward tier also includes a signed vinyl copy of the Folk Opera album along with a beautiful book of original Folk Opera artwork. Additionally, you will receive a signed limited edition Folk Opera poster, two VIP Folk Opera album release tickets, and a special mention by name in the album liner notes. Oh, and a Folk Opera shirt and pen! If you have no way of playing your beautiful vinyl copy of the Folk Opera we will find a way to include the CD version too!

    Includes:
    • Folk Opera Album - Vinyl
    • Folk Opera Art Booklet
    • VIP Album Release Tickets
    • Folk Opera Poster
    • Liner Note Thank You
    • Folk Opera Shirt
    • Folk Opera Pen
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 2 backers
    $

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Funding period

- (30 days)