CITY STAGE NEW WEST, a non-profit charitable organization, is raising funds to produce a professional cast recording CD of STUMP CITY STORIES, the Ovation Award-nominated new Canadian musical based on the history of New Westminster, by George Ryan.
Come be part of this amazing legacy project! We need to raise $3,000 by December 24, 2013, so please join us today in making this terrific project a reality. You can check out the sidebar on the right hand side to view the list of support levels and rewards, including some great seasonal gift ideas. No charges are made on your credit card UNLESS we reach our funding goal in the allotted time. Tax receipts can be issued for donations.
This is the third leg of our ongoing cultural legacy project, which began with commissioning the work in 2009. In 2010 we brought a professional workshop production of the show free of charge to 1500 students. Now we are raising the approximately $15,000 necessary to produce a lasting record of this superbly entertaining and informative musical, and will be donating the rights of its use to the City of New Westminster and its Fraser River Centre, Museum and Archives, Anvil Arts Centre, Library, and School District for future civic events or educational purposes—for everyone!
STUMP CITY STORIES' 18 songs tell the history of New Westminster and British Columbia in humourous, poignant, toe-tapping style, from the Quayquayt First Nations and the arrival of the British through more recent times--celebrating British Columbia’s original Chinatown (Yi Fao) and diverse populations, the dramas of the Great Freeze, the Great Fire, the Great Bank Robbery, the controversial moving of the Capitol, the blissful nostalgia of the Interurban Line, CKNW radio’s success, and the advent of more recent heroes including film-and-tv star Raymond Burr, astronaut Robert Thirsk, and professional athletes Justin Morneau and Billy Ranford.
·George Ryan, Composer/Librettist. Currently Director of Music at Holy Trinity Cathedral, New Westminster, George was Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival's original Music Director from 1990-2001, receiving three Jessie Award nominations for his work there. He has written incidental music for 15 CBC Radio Dramas and a large number of musical theatre works.
Sean Allan, Actor/singer. A native of Victoria, BC, Sean has been featured in 5 Broadway shows, 3 national tours, and summer stock theatres all over North America. Featured in numerous films and television series, this busy actor has received several Jessie Richardson Award nominations including for his roles in Nine and Mack and Mabel. He has worked with everyone from Elaine Strich, Betty Comden, and Carol Burnett, to John Cleese, Chevy Chase, and Andre Previn--to name just a few.
Dora Brooks, Actor/singer. A New Westminster soprano, Dora is a graduate of the Vancouver Academy of Music in the Artist Diploma programme with teacher David Meek.Dora has performed in musicals since the age of 8; recent operatic roles include Emmie in Albert Herring, Gianetta in Elixir of Love, and Phyllis in Iolanthe, and the title role in Massenet's Cinderella for DragonDiva Operatic Theatre of New Westminster.
Damon Calderwood, Actor/singer. Vancouver born, Damon has performed in over 150 shows since age 9. Recent credits include the Canadian premiere of Holmes and Watson Save the Empire!, the title role in Billy Bishop Goes to War at the Evergreen Cultural Centre, Caleb in The Spitfire Grill with Pacific Theatre and many others.
Jeremy Lowe, Actor/singer. Jeremy has studied at Capilano College and is a graduate of Edmonton's Grant MacEwan College. He has appeared on many Vancouver stages. Select credits include White Christmas, Les Miserables, The Producers (Arts Club) as The Cat in the Hat in Seussical (Carousel), and Bernardo in West Side Story (RCMT).
Chorus members: Jackie Block (Royal City Musical Theatre); Gower Roberts, Scott Grimsey (A Capella Fellas); Karen Crew, Carolyn Marsh (Holy Trinity Cathedral Choir).
- “Busloads of British Columbians should see this show!” —Scott Swan, Founder/Artistic Producer, APPLAUSE! Musicals Society, OVATION! Awards
- “FABULOUS! ...Everyone, young and old, should live the moments so profoundly portrayed... The music and lyrics are wonderfully inspired and moving in all emotional directions.” --Sandra Shaw
- “…educational, hilarious, irreverent, and moving…We recommend that all school age children, university students studying local history, BC and local historians, historically minded audiences, and the general public see this production.” --Gavin Hainsworth & Katherine Freund-Hainsworth, author historians, A New Westminster Album
- “Poignant! Need more of this local programming.” --Lorrie Williams, New Westninster Councillor
- “Brilliant. Thank you for such a great show.” -- Lorraine Brett
- “I had no idea about the depth of New West History.” --S.King
- “Excellent—perfect for students to learn our history!” --Janet Greenhow
City Stage New West's mission is to bring to our community professional theatre that entertains, enlightens, and educates while strengthening respect for Canadian diversity. More info at www.citystagenewwest.org
KICKSTARTER VIDEO CREDITS
- New Westminster Museum and Archives for use of historic photos
- OMNI TV, The Royal City Record, City of New Westminster
- Boston Pizza
- Paolo Zenone and the Moody Park Youth Centre
- Film Editor Kyle Gherman
- Artists George Ryan, Sean Allan, Jeremy Lowe, Dora Brooks, Damon Calderwood (and son Riley!)
Participants & Assistants Rob McCullough, Barry Dykes, Judith Berlin, Tsion Mulatu, The Venerable John Bailey, Afshin Haidari, Valerie Sing Turner, Andree St. Martin, Julie Graham, Bev Jakeman, Henry Beasley, Luke McAndless-Davis, Janet Greenhow, Artika Mehta, Athomas & Fiona Goldberg.
Visit www.citystagenewwest.org or click here for the uncut Kickstarter video!
Risks and challenges
BUDGETING & FUNDRAISING
15 years ago, composer George Ryan was involved in a similar project, recording over a decade’s-worth of songs he wrote for Vancouver’s Bard on the Beach Shakespeare festival in a professional cast album. The cost then was approximately $15,000.
Fifteen years later prices have not gotten cheaper! The total professional artists’ fees—script revisions, creating and laying musical accompaniment tracks and union actors’ buyouts and royalties--represent the major expenses, followed by studio recording time, mixing and mastering, graphics and layout, packaging, and fundraising (yes, fundraising is an expense!) But this has been a true labour of love for all of us at City Stage New West: our professional administration has worked diligently as volunteers (no fees) on this ongoing project since its inception in 2009. And a lot of people—including the artists—have also donated time toward making this third leg of STUMP CITY STORIES project a reality.
Though we have already received a generous grant from the City of New Westminster ($4,000), and a Province of British Columbia Multicultural Grant ($2,500), plus some awesome private donations, we are still shy about half of what we need, based on an incredibly-frugal $15,000 figure. Realistically, it is too risky to ask for all we need on Kickstarter—you only get funds if you meet your goal! We believe a $3,000 goal, targeted to pay part of the artists’ fees, will be realistic for this format. That amount will get this CD recorded as we continue to raise funds in other ways to proceed to finalize getting the hard copies on shelves in May 2014.
FUTURE GOALS: Should we exceed our fundraising goals, funds will be set aside for the fourth leg of our project: making the first fully-produced production of STUMP CITY STORIES (so far it has only been performed under Canadian Actors Equity Associations's workshop and staged readings contracts, which forbid production values like lighting, costumes, and memorized lines.)Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (40 days)