performers.net forums  

Go Back   performers.net forums > BUSKING STUFF > FESTIVAL DISCUSSIONS

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 06-12-03, 09:17 PM   #1
almo
New Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: 14 Ludlam St., Falmouth, Ma. 02540
Posts: 5
Send a message via AIM to almo
Thumbs down Hyannis Main Street Events

Dave Rosenfield of Hyannis Main Street Events took my DREAM and ripped it off but in doing so he perverted it because he doesn't live it, he doesn't breath it, he didn't dream it and he'll never "get it". It's all about the Benjies to Dave. He's never been there. He's not a performer. He can't see the difference between a petting zoo and a street artist. He thinks street performers are bums, or hobos or better still, in his mind, suckers. That's what he played me for.

My name is Allan Moniz I am a member of The Suspenders Juggling Troupe. I also perform solo. I have
worked for Food Play. I have also been the producer for the Mashpee Commons Street Performer's Festival
on Cape Cod for the past 15 years. I also teach circus skills in the area of Cape Cod etc; etc; etc;

Last summer I worked and booked other acts to work for Dave Rosenfield of Main Street Events,
in Hyannis, MA. While Dave was tough to negotiate with he wasn't impossible, yet. While working the event I immediately saw the possibilities of the venue and began to pitch the idea of a Busker Fest to Dave. He seemed very interested. Finally last fall (02) he asked me for a written proposal on the idea. I wrote up a detailed description of how busking works, how to build a festival that works for both the busker and the public. I proposed that we tie it into the festival I already had up and running and call the whole thing The
Cape Cod Buskers Fest. I explained to him the value of quality acts, why you want professional street acts, and how you had to pay good up front money to get the event established and do publicity to get the foot-traffic built up and how you had to know accurately the average size of "hats" to honestly represent your event to performers. I then proposed a comparatively modest budget to get the whole thing going.

He seemed to buy the whole enchilada and we had an agreement over the phone, or so I thought.

On the basis of that agreement I went ahead and e-mailed people about the event. I put it on the
Suspenders web-site, I began talking it up etc. I even contacted Mashpee Commons about the tie-in.

Then this spring I contacted Dave again to firm up the final figures, get a written contract, talk about logistics etc. and he completely pulled the rug out from under me. He basically ignored our earlier discussions and the written proposal and suggested a whole new price that made me gag, and then wouldn't budge on it. He essentially killed the deal. My head was spinning but what could I do, I knew what it costs to get good acts and I was already relying on my charm and contacts to get me a deal from the performers anyway. So I had to walk away. But you know what's coming next, don't you?

Now I hear he is calling performers on his own, some that I specifically mentioned in my proposal, claiming that he has this great venue, acting like he knows all about busking. No surprise there, I guess.
Maybe that was his plan all along but it still makes me feel like this:

Dave Rosenfield of Hyannis Main Street Events took my DREAM and ripped it off but in doing so he perverted it because he doesn't live it, he doesn't breath it, he didn't dream it and he'll never "get it". It's all about the Benjies to Dave. He's never been there. He's not a performer. He can't see the difference between a petting zoo and an "Act". He thinks street performers are bums, or hobos or better still, in his mind, suckers. That's what he played me for.
[img]frown.gif[/img]
almo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-03, 01:08 AM   #2
Jim
Your Host
 
Jim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Boston, MA USA
Posts: 1,093
Blog Entries: 6
Exclamation

Al,

He hasn't called me yet, but if he does, I'll stick up for you.

This very same thing happened to me with another gig recently. I was booked for a perfomance through an agency and even had a confirmation letter. Then I found out the client cancelled the entertainment at the event, cut out the agent and started contacting acts individually. That's slimey.

Never in my 12 year performing career have I asked for a deposit when I book a date. But in the past 6 months, I've had three different gigs (I had confirmation letters on two of them) on my calendar get cancelled by flakey agents or producers. Had I taken deposits, I would have been several hundred dollars richer and the agents/producers would have possibly learned a few lessons. I like to think I can trust clients, but it seems to me that lately things have gotten very tight, buget-wise, and very loose planning-wise.

I don't feel I NEED to take a deposit for most of my bookings, but I'm definitely feeling more cautios these days.

Jim
__________________
Jim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-03, 09:37 AM   #3
martin ewen
Senior Member
 
martin ewen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Trapped-Please send money
Posts: 1,888
Blog Entries: 15
Default

Rather than ringing 508-790-0167 and abusing Dave Rosenfield , or e-mailing him at amuse@cape.com. Which would only confirm to him that you are a lightweight with no sense of political process, (which admittedly was my first impulse.) I would suggest you look at his business and see what it is that is most important for its continued success and then by legal and entirely legitimate means, go about the process of eroding those elements.

He has for example, an obvious relationship with the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce that benefits him. Either on your own, if possible, obtain the minutes of meetings held by them and from that work out who his contact person is and their title. Or you could just ring them but thats less subtle and could tip your hand.
Establish contact with this person and arrange a meeting.
At the meeting explain that you had done some unpaid consultant work for Mr Rosinfield, explain that you waivered your fee because you believed that a successful summer event would be beneficial for you in the medium to long term but to the community and the Cap Cod chamber of commerce immediately.
Express dissapointment at what you consider to be stock implementation of one agents local talent base and ask for the opportunity to submitt a brief of prospective proposals for their consideration for future summer event programs.
Explain that you are a one of a number of people who are working together to introduce and implement community festivals that harness a cost effective way of having international acts and variety acts participate in a way that maximizes limited budgets while providing a unique but tested new template.
As examples point to (and write up with contact info) Windsor, Waterloo, Dundas.
Quickly contact some or all of these people and explain what you are attempting, ask if you could ask their advice from time to time.
(Now you have a situation where you have involved a number of proffessionals for no cost.)
Also outline your experience as an entertainer and the extensive casting and goodwill potential that that implies (as regarding the budget)
Include a test sample of your best potential performers. With lovely pics etc.
Quantify benefits, emphasise increases in local revenue where possible and balance this favourably with budget outlays where you can.
(If you can use the phases, 'cost effective' and 'maximizing the impact of limited budgets' all the better.)
Give the guy a good presentation, good research and background and leave him/her with the impression that you are 'in control and capable.'

Given info that makes your contact look as if he/she's doing a wonderful job, have presented new ideas and showed you are capable of something interesting that doesn't automatically radically increase a budget you should get a look in and make your case at a full meeting in time.
Its a lot of work but not too difficult it you do it step by step.
This other guy will sweat and you may obtain your prime objective which is to put something on .

one consideration is that the CCCC might not be spending enough to make it worthwhile for anybody other than a shark who can hire sad attractions.

the low effort/low cost option is to contact Kim from the halifax festival who already puts on a series of summer festivals on limited budgets with a good variety of international acts. (I'm not inferring that i completely support all her business practices but she is a brilliant salesperson and does produce festivals where there were none before and her ruthlessness is admirable and she hires brilliant staff)
If theres indeed any budget she will leave this Rosinfield guy beached and gasping. (or you could do it yourself)
Good luck. Don't get mad..get even
martin ewen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-03, 09:44 AM   #4
almo
New Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: 14 Ludlam St., Falmouth, Ma. 02540
Posts: 5
Send a message via AIM to almo
Thumbs down

Thanks Jim -

That's cool. That's very cool...the part about sticking up for me if he calls...although I don't think yours was one of the acts that I mentioned by name in my proposal(I didn't lay ALL my cards out on the table, after all. I'm not a complete fool.(Hey, no wisecracks there.))

But what you mention about money being tight is accurate , I think, and it forces the issue on whether people are honorable or not. Being
uptight and by the book is not the way I like to work and I hope it doesn't come to that. Your word should be good, that's really what it's about.

almo
almo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-15-03, 12:00 AM   #5
The Pretty Good
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Brooklyn
Posts: 204
Send a message via AIM to The Pretty Good
Post

I really liked your use of the word Benjies.
__________________
The Pretty Good is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-15-03, 06:42 PM   #6
almo
New Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: 14 Ludlam St., Falmouth, Ma. 02540
Posts: 5
Send a message via AIM to almo
Post

Martin -

I just read your reply and am very impressed by much of what you write and say. When first the deal went sour, I cast about in my
head and came up with at least some of the options that you
put forth. I considered "going over" Dave's head...going directly
to the committee, making a direct presentation and felt confident
that I could "sell" the festival with many of the points you mention:
ie hooking into the international street performer's circuit, building
up the attendence so that the event pays for itself, etc. etc.

But I had considerations that such a tactic may back-fire, I had a sense that Dave may have this committee in his back-pocket. That maybe he is doing, as you say, what they want him to do: be a shark.

Also, when he asked for the proposal in the fall it was "to present
to his committee..." so they may have seen my concepts already and, as
I mentioned before, decided to defer to Dave's judgement.

But I do feel that there is a certain amount of - they are sitting on
a natural spot for street performing to develope and it is the best
forum to do a festival on The Cape. Better than my present Mashpee
site and the place that I have been looking to expand to for years.

I feel my Mashpee fest is starting to stagnate and I felt that this was going to be the break to expand it that I've been waiting for. Dave and the people he works for are, in my world view, blocking this logical flow. I really feel that, because of circumstance more than anything else, I am really the guy in this local area to put together
such an event. I mean I have a track record and all and there aren't
too many people of Cape Cod with a similar resume. In spite of all
your common sense suggestions on how to proceed, though, Martin, right
now, expressing this stuff here on p-net feels to me like it's getting
some of this situtation un-stuck, if in my mind only. After that, I'll have to see where
it takes me. But, again, thanks for your impressive analysis!

almo
energy
almo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-03, 01:44 PM   #7
Lynneski
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: chez moi
Posts: 370
Apple

Ahhhhhh, yes. *This* sounds familiar.

'Tis the age-old conundrum of festival and event planners everywhere: how much information to include to convince a buyer you know what you're doing and can deliver the goods, without providing a road-map that renders you nearly irrelevant to someone with common sense who knows how to build contacts.

What are you selling, Al?

Anyone can (and often does) put on a festival. You need marketing, toilets, food, and something to happen.

What you are selling is your knowledge of the artform, your contacts amongst its practitioners, your ability to proactively forsee and eliminate conflict, and your understanding of the "soft" elements that build a festival's reputation within the community.

What you are not selling is the "idea" to have a festival. They're ten a penny.

A few pointers, if I may be so bold:

-ONLY talk to the decision-makers, the people who sign the cheques.
-Get a written "letter of intent", or better yet, a deposit, before submitting a proposal.
-Get thee to a lawyer - and get a strong non-disclosure statement that a client must sign before you release your proposal. This statement should include a provision that none of the third parties referenced in the proposal may be retained, except under bona fide contract to you, and that none of the information may be disclosed to anyone outside the evaluation team. Get it as toothy as you can. If they're serious business people, they'll understand and accept your desire to protect "proprietary" information.
-Provide evidence of your experience, worthiness, ability to deliver through references from other clients, producers you've worked for/with, artists who've worked for/with you.
-Don't name names until the cheque is in the bank.
-Take the complete proposal to the seaside town down the road that competes for tourists with the place that didn't have a festival.
-Accept that sometimes you just have to tell a client that they can't afford what they want, and walk away. Any attempt on their part to pull off an event without the elements you know to be crucial is bound for failure. Run.

If I had a dollar for every "might-have-been" I'd have a fistfull of dollars and a lot of "might-have-beens".

Keep on keepin' on, dude.
__________________
EVENTS!(etc)
Lynneski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-03, 08:33 PM   #8
almo
New Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: 14 Ludlam St., Falmouth, Ma. 02540
Posts: 5
Send a message via AIM to almo
Post

What are these "soft elements" that build a festival's rep that you mention in your p-net posting?

almmmmmo
almo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-03, 09:58 PM   #9
Lynneski
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: chez moi
Posts: 370
Apple

Those are the things you do, the items and services you provide, the care you take to ensure that artists are not just working, but made welcome AND provided with the things that they need, so that their only task is to give good show. 'Tis the ability to create that sense of temporary home that makes the difference between a place of employment and a place of enjoyment.
__________________
EVENTS!(etc)
Lynneski is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.