Beloved television star and popular social media personality George Takei announced an innovative crowdfunding initiative on the platform Indiegogo designed to benefit The Japanese American National Museum.
Takei is making his Broadway debut in Allegiance, a new American musical, co-starring with Tony Award winner Lea Salonga and Telly Leung, which is set to begin preview performances on Tuesday, October 6, 2015, at the Longacre Theatre (220 West 48th Street). The trio will reprise their roles which they originated in the record-breaking engagement of Allegiance at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego. Allegiance has a book by Marc Acito with music and lyrics by Jay Kuo. Helming the production is Olivier Award nominee Stafford Arima (London’s Ragtime, Off-Broadway’s Bare, Carrie, Altar Boyz). Opening night is Sunday, November 8, 2015.
Allegiance is inspired by Takei’s true childhood experiences. Traversing the lush California heartland, the windswept prairies of Wyoming and the battlefields of war-torn Europe, Allegiance tells the epic multi-generational tale of deep family loyalty, romance, humor, optimism and unparalleled heroism in the face of fear and prejudice against Japanese-Americans during World War II and beyond.
Takei requested that Allegiance’s producing team find a way for Allegiance to support the museum, and the producer developed a groundbreaking approach that will harness the power of George’s social media fan base and allow fans to contribute directly to the production while benefiting the museum.
Typically, a show gets to Broadway with funding by a group of producers and investors. Allegiance’s producers have accepted George’s call to action for crowdfunding, with a minimum goal of $250,000, but with the potential for more. Any and all contributions will act as if they had been invested by the Japanese American National Museum (JANM): the show will assign a proportional percentage of its profits to the establishment of a permanent endowment of unrestricted revenue for the museum, an institution which promotes understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity by sharing the Japanese American experience. As a long-time actor and activist for equal rights, this campaign for Allegiance represents an intersection where art meets activism, encouraging supporters to join George on this groundbreaking venture. All names of contributors will be featured on a Virtual Wall of Fame.
Crowdfunding has been used for theatrical ventures previously, but this is the first time that individual contributors – no matter how small – are able to join together and help establish a permanent benefit for a not-for-profit institution from the equity interest that would have otherwise belonged to someone investing that same aggregate amount.
Any contribution, regardless of the amount, is dynamic; its benefit actually multiplies: it supports George, Allegiance *and* is an act of advocacy for equality; all it takes is $1 and a share to make a difference.
To Contribute Online: http://www.allegiancemusical.com/legacy
Additional information, including complete casting, will be announced shortly. For more information go to www.AllegianceMusical.com
Tony Award winner Lea Salonga and Telly Leung Set to Co-star with George Takei in ALLEGIANCE; Previews Begin at the Longacre Theatre on October 6
George Takei Set for Broadway Debut in ALLEGIANCE in October
The Old Globe’s Production Photos of George Takei, Lea Salonga, Telly Leung and Paolo Montalban in World Premiere of Allegiance – A New American Musical
George Takei, Lea Salonga, Telly Leung and Paolo Montalban star in the World Premiere of Allegiance – A New American Musical at The Old Globe, September 7 – October 21, 2012
Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman. She is profiled in Jade Magazine.
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