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Transform the beautiful second level of a historic Firehouse into a new venue for movies and events in MetroWest Boston.
Transform the beautiful second level of a historic Firehouse into a new venue for movies and events in MetroWest Boston.
543 backers pledged $103,420 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$103,420

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YOUR PERFORMING ARTS CENTER

If you live in MetroWest Boston and frequent the local arts scene, you have probably attended a show at The Center for Arts in Natick. 

TCAN presents a wide variety of live music concerts, community theatre productions, arts education programs and other events in a funky yet historic firehouse in Natick Center. All our programs are currently presented in our main stage theatre, located on the ground floor of the building.

We are adding a second performance space to our facility, enabling us to expand programs even further. Your pledge to this Kickstarter campaign will provide the technology and furnishings to add film screenings to supplement live performances.

Once completed, you will be among the patrons who enjoy this new venue with your family and friends.

Most importantly, you can make it happen.

While TCAN presents programs year-round on its 270-seat main stage, the beautiful second floor of the firehouse remains unused. This project will transform the space creating a new venue to enjoy films, concerts and community events.

  • 120-seat performance space for live music
  • State-of-the-art digital projection equipment
  • A more spacious lobby, box office and concession area

Imagine a lineup of programming that adds movies to our calendar of live music and theater performances. Close to home -- so you can enjoy the arts more often with less hassle. Giving you more opportunities to connect with friends.

  • A film series with art house cinema, vintage classics, independent films and documentaries
  • A resource for family films and children's arts education programs
  • An opportunity for film festivals, lectures and classes
  • An intimate performance space for chamber music and student recitals
  • An improved patron experience when you come to TCAN

AN OPPORTUNITY TO EXPAND PROGRAMS

Natick's Central Firehouse was built in 1875. 

When TCAN purchased and restored the building in 2001 (126 years later!) a single, 4,200 square foot unobstructed performance venue was created on the ground floor. This space is our primary “main stage” with seating for 270 patrons, state-of-the-art sound and theatrical lighting systems.

But this “main stage” room represents just 40% of the building’s total capacity. The beautiful upper level, with 3,300 square feet of space and a 30 foot high vaulted ceiling, has never been used or even revealed to the general public. 

It is a dramatic space.

The distinctive features of the upper level include exposed brick walls, majestic natural wood rafters and trusses and the original extended height windows. These features make the upper level architecturally and acoustically unique.

A BRIGHT FUTURE FOR TCAN

We want the Firehouse -- and TCAN as an organization -- to be around for future generations to enjoy. 

For us this means retiring debt, creating a building fund for maintenance and using our entire facility to deliver programming.

Our plans for TCAN will make us a stronger, more stable organization positioned to deliver and grow on our arts-based mission well into the future.

A VIBRANT CULTURAL DISTRICT FOR EVERYONE

In 2012, Natick Center was officially designated a Cultural District by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. TCAN, which attracts more than 20,000 regional visitors annually, was identified as a key cultural anchor.

In April 2016, the Boston Globe cited Natick as one of the Top Ten Hottest Real Estate Markets in Eastern Massachusetts - and highlighted TCAN as one of Natick's main attractions. Natick Center has become a regional destination with a thriving arts scene, a beautiful Common park and Farmers Market, a variety of restaurants and cool boutiques. 

We believe now is the time to build on that positive momentum.

The upper level of the Firehouse will be renovated with a new floor and lobby area for patrons entering the theater. The new space will seat 120 patrons for film screenings and live performances. Our plans include the addition of two bathrooms and a small storage area that will be used for catering private functions. A cinema projector, video content server and projection screen will enable presentation of movie screenings, film festivals and classes. Your Kickstarter donation will make this programming possible.

The main lobby will be renovated with new flooring and ceilings. A streamlined box office will simplify ticketing and create more room for patrons. The new concession stand will provide easy access to snacks and beverages during events on both floors. The new gallery wall will provide a more professional presentation of visual art exhibitions.

 A CAMPAIGN TO SUSTAIN TCAN INTO THE FUTURE

Your Kickstarter pledge will support TCAN's Generations capital campaign. 

These are our goals: 

  • Use the entire facility for arts programs
  • Maintain the historic firehouse with a dedicated building fund
  • Complete the renovation with no outstanding debt

Our capital fundraising began back in 2013. So far, TCAN members and supporters have contributed over $1.1 million dollars to make these goals a reality. We are nearing 70% of our campaign goal of $1.6M. We are getting very close.

To fulfill all our goals for the campaign - including the completion of the project with no outstanding debt - we need the last $500,000 for building materials, construction, digital projection equipment and furniture. Your Kickstarter pledge will move us forward to hit and exceed this goal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

With support from these generous donors we are moving forward with the construction of the new venue, including the renovation of our lobby area and the addition of a second floor stairway, bathrooms and common areas. The renovation is planned for completion in early September 2016.

But to actually deliver arts programs in this space, we need your help.

Meeting our goal of $75,000 for this Kickstarter campaign will fund the following technology components to support our planned programming:

  • State-of-the-art digital cinema projector utilizing DLP technology
  • Professional digital cinema server for commercial video content delivery
  • Video routing and processing hardware
  • Tech booth equipment rack and custom enclosures

 Stretch Goal 1: Reaching $100,000 will allow us to add a full 20' viewing screen with masking, retractable curtains and frame.

Stretch Goal 2: Reaching $125,000 will add a surround sound audio system with a digital cinema processor, 3 main speakers, 10 surround speakers, subwoofer for low-end frequencies and amplifiers to power the entire system.

Stretch Goal 3: Reaching $175,000 will add 120 portable audience chairs with upholstered seat and back cushions, automatic spring-return seat mechanisms and cup holders.

Stretch Goal 4: Reaching $200,000 will add restaurant quality refrigeration equipment, a commercial-grade dual faucet keg beer dispenser and under counter ice machine for the concession area. Oh, and a new popcorn machine.

NOW ITS UP TO YOU  

Let's create a new model for community-based arts organizations. We have come this far with a small staff, a team of dedicated volunteers and a shoestring budget. Together we can make this project a reality.

We invite all TCAN patrons, members and friends to join our campaign!

 

In 1997 TCAN was a small community-based arts group in a tiny Natick Center storefront. In the last year, we presented over 200 concerts, theater productions and arts classes attracting an audience of over 25,000 patrons. 

Our success has fostered a renaissance in Natick Center, with new restaurants, galleries, residential developments and cultural activities. We believe this exciting project, once completed, will take TCAN and the MetroWest region to a whole new level.

Our mission and programs are supported by a growing list of members, sponsors, and volunteers from across the region. Together we can do this.

OUR MISSION – OUR PASSION

We believe the arts are essential to a complete human experience, and fundamental to the creation of a vibrant and healthy community.

We strive to present arts programs of the highest standard that are available to everyone.

We are passionate about providing community access to great arts programs and building appreciation through arts education.

THE CENTER FOR ARTS IN NATICK

TCAN has assembled a strong Building Committee including David Lavalley, Executive Director; Erin Basile, Theatre Operations Manager, Michael Collins, Project Director, Steve Levinsky, Board Chairman, Nick Perakis, Facility Engineering, and Ken Soderhold, Construction Supervisor.

ARCHITECTS - MILFORD & FORD ASSOCIATES

Established in 1994, Milford & Ford Associates is an architecture and interior design firm specializing in creating innovative environments for consulting firms, financial service corporations, the software industry, higher education and the residential market.

Christopher Milford, AIA - In a career spanning three decades, Chris has distinguished himself as an innovative architect, technician, and historian. Chris holds a Masters Degree in Architecture from Cornell University, and is a registered architect in Massachusetts, Washington D.C., and New York. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the Boston Society of Architects (BSA), and is past chair of the BSA MetroWest Network group. He has been a guest lecturer at Harvard GSD and is an officer of the Natick Historic District Commission.

Patricia M. Ford, LEED GA - As a founding Principal, Patricia brings a unique blend of interior design skills and architectural knowledge to her work. With over thirty years of experience her design diversity, coupled with exceptional project management skills, has allowed her to move easily within the fields of corporate, higher education and residential. Her work has been awarded the American Woodwork Institute's Award of Excellence, and has been published in Contract Design magazine.

Patricia received a Bachelor of Interior Design from Iowa State University. She is certified by the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) and holds LEED professional accreditation with the US Green Building Council.

GENERAL CONTRACTOR - CHAPMAN CONSTRUCTION

Chapman Construction/Design of Newton, MA provides industry-leading sustainable construction management and consulting services to forward-looking corporate, education, and healthcare clients. They take pride in managing a close-knit, team-oriented culture, and inconstantly challenging and refining systems of project delivery.

Notable projects for nonprofit organizations include the Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater in Wellfleet, MA, Rosie's Place, The Learning Center for the Deaf, the South Shore Conservatory, The Gifford School, Dimock Community Health Center and Element Care in Lowell, MA.

John Hyde, Senior Project Manager is managing the project on behalf of Chapman Construction.

BOSTON LIGHT & SOUND

Boston Light & Sound, one of the nation’s leading entertainment technology companies, maintains the personal touch of a small specialty operation. As a dealer for most major HD video, film, and digital cinema projection equipment manufacturers, BL&S designs, supplies, and installs systems for theatres, museums, film festivals, and state-of-the-art screening facilities. We are known for our expertise in HD video, 35mm, and digital cinema technology used for film festivals, world premieres, and screenings. Our engineers advise many diverse clients such as educational institutions, film studios, theme park attractions, and exhibit clients on all aspects of projection design. BL&S is an authorized digital cinema, video, and film equipment reseller.

The porfolio of video and audio projects created by Boston Light & Sound is extensive, and includes the Coolidge Corner Theatre in Brookline, MA, Martin Scorsese's personal digital screening room, the Paramount Theatre at Emerson College, Citi Performing Arts Center, the Shubert Theatre in Boston and many more.

Larry Shaw of Boston Light & Sound is principal and co-founder.

HIGH OUTPUT INC.

High Output, Inc. is New England’s premier supplier of production services and equipment for film, television, theatre, and events, with offices in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine, Georgia, and South Carolina. Founded in 1986 with an emphasis on state-of-the-art technology and superior customer service, High Output supports feature film, television, theatre, live music, political events, corporate meetings, fundraisers, parties, and much more. We also design and install technologically advanced permanent lighting, AV, and rigging systems in venues of all kinds, and operate four sound stages for film and television production.

Mark Shore of High Output is Director of Systems Design for the lighting elements of the project.

CAVANAUGH TOCCI ASSOCIATES - ACOUSTIC ENGINEERS

Cavanaugh Tocci Associates, located in Sudbury, Massachusetts, was founded in 1975 by William Cavanaugh and Gregory Tocci to serve the growing need for technical expertise and consulting services in architectural, industrial, and environmental acoustics. The service objective is to provide practical, cost-effective, and timely consulting advice on all types of sound and vibration problems.

Timothy J. Foulkes is a consultant to the project on issues of acoustics and control of noise and vibration.

 

Risks and challenges

To use the new venue for programming films and other programs, our Kickstarter campaign must raise additional funds for projection and audio equipment, video server technology and furnishings for the new space. If we fail to raise these funds through our Kickstarter campaign, purchase of this equipment will be delayed -- along with a delay of the arts programs we have planned for the space.

While our initial Kickstarter goal is much lower than our total project budget, achieving our target and stretch goals will allow us to accelerate our build schedule and begin using the new space for programming as early as fall of 2016.

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Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    THANK YOU!

    Every bit helps bring us towards our goal of sustaining TCAN into the future. You'll get a personal thank you from our staff and Board of Directors and exclusive backer-only updates throughout the renovation (included with all rewards).

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    MOVIE SPECIAL #1

    You'll receive two passes to a movie of your choice in the new screening room. You're one of the first to enjoy the new space!

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    Pledge $110 or more About $110

    MOVIE SPECIAL #2

    You'll receive four passes to a movie of your choice in the new screening room, PLUS our thanks and special recognition in the TCAN Member Guide following the grand opening!

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    Pledge $275 or more About $275

    MOVIE SPECIAL #3

    You'll receive everything included in Movie Special #2, PLUS a limited edition TCAN tee-shirt! Tell the world that you are a proud supporter of TCAN!

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    Pledge $550 or more About $550

    KICKSTARTER CELEBRATION

    You'll receive everything included in Movie Special #3, PLUS an exclusive invitation to a VIP celebration party in the new space on TCAN's upper level! You'll party with other Kickstarter backers and toast your great success!

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    Pledge $1,100 or more About $1,100

    FREQUENT FLYER

    You'll receive everything included in Kickstarter Celebration, PLUS an all-access movie pass for two, allowing you to attend 12 full months of movie screenings following the opening of the screening room!

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    Reward no longer available 10 backers
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    Pledge $3,300 or more About $3,300

    FOREVER REMEMBERED

    You'll receive everything included in Kickstarter Celebration, PLUS your name recognized on a permanent plaque displayed prominently in the TCAN Firehouse!

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    Pledge $5,500 or more About $5,500

    YOUR PRIVATE FUNCTION

    You'll receive everything in Kickstarter Celebration, PLUS one free rental of the new upper level theater for your own private party or movie screening! More information at natickarts.org/ksrentals

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    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    GRAND PIANO

    You'll receive everything in Kickstarter Celebration, PLUS a vintage 6 foot grand piano once owned by jazz vocalist Kenny Rankin, autographed on the soundboard! More information available at natickarts.org/kspiano

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    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    HAMMOND B3 ORGAN

    You'll receive everything in Kickstarter Celebration, PLUS a vintage Hammond B3 organ with Leslie speaker cabinet in good working condition! More information available at natickarts.org/ksorgan

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Funding period

- (45 days)