Nothing begets success like success. Successful people are constantly doing something.
For a singer to get a job, consider the person or producer who is trying to hire a singer. A producer will hear lots of voices, and many will be right for the part. Given the choice, however, between an A singer who is new and an A- or even B+ singer who is just finishing a singing job, the producer will likely lean to the singer who is singing–less risk taking a known quantity. The known quantity has been hired by someone else and audiences have vetted the singer for the producer.
So, obviously, to get a job, you need a job.
Sometimes you’ll have to create that job. One of the surest ways is to become a producer of a show. Naturally, you’ll have a “leading role” – the role that will impress other producers.
Every day, people with worthy causes look for something they desperately need; and they believe that without it, their cause will die. They are searching for money. Non-profits rely heavily on benefit concerts and fundraising events to fill their financial coffers.
Recent natural disasters such as devastation from tornadoes, hurricanes (Katrina) and tsunami add to the already long line of worthy causes needing your help in raising funds.
You can take part in fundraising events as an organizer and driving force, but where do you begin organizing such a large event? Just like all 500-pound marshmallows, they are eaten one bite at a time.
Here is a brief outline of how to create a benefit concert, including what you need, what actions to take, and what to do with the funds you raise (this could be a problem for some because of tax implications):
Step One – Get Sponsorship. It’s fairly easy. Lots of NGO’s in need of funds.
Step Two – Establish the Venue then Date
Step Three – Establish a Theme
Step Four – Design the Concert
Stage Five – Obtain Corporate Sponsors
Step Six – Make the Booking
Step Seven – Sell Tickets
The least effective way to sell tickets is to buy space on the radio, television or in the print media. It is a shotgun form of advertising that mostly broadcasts to those who would never come, in hopes of getting a few that might.
We’ll discuss in other blogs the most effective ways to sell tickets.
Step Eight – Bank the Money
Make sure you get the name, address, phone number and e-mail address of every ticket holder.
Step Nine – Rehearse the Entire Program Several Times
Even though it is a concert of parts, get the parts together and run through the pace and timing of the program. Add or cut where needed to enhance the program’s flow. You may have to cut several people back one number. Do not cut yourself back, however. You must perform. You have earned it.
Step Ten – Have an Emcee
Ask someone else to emcee, preferably a local celebrity, dignitary, radio or TV personality. Give them careful guidelines. Let them prepare to praise you – and you will use this praise later to enhance your credibility.
Step Eleven – Hold a VIP Reception
Step Twelve – Follow up
For every name, address and e-mail, send a thank-you letter.
Thank your sponsors. Again, ask them for more donations.
Thank your board and make sure you ask them who else you should thank.
Thank the service organizations and government agencies that helped in any way.
And then send the money, after deducting expenses (including your expenses!), to the promised organization. Certainly the American Red Cross (not the International Red Cross, which has become a more political organization), Catholic Charities, LDS Foundation, Doctors without Borders and other great charities could use your help. Get letters from them confirming the donation and praising your efforts.
Then go home, curl up in bed and take a long sleep. You deserve it. You have done something wonderful and fulfilling that will not only help those who are a whole lot less fortunate, but will do wonders for your career. And… this is big… make sure you get paid for your work. Yes, those who hold benefit concerts can get paid, and paid quite nicely.
That’s just a snippet. See my book Marketing Singers for a full description of all twelve steps, how to sell tickets and get sponsorships and other critical details. Buy the book from Classical Singer’s bookstore at www.ClassicalSinger.com/store.