What is the Pony Pie Fête?
This year Pony Pie created a great night out in Glasgow to directly supports its Arches Live production “How Keanu Reeves Saved the World.” In association with Glasgow’s finest restaurant group, Two Fat Ladies Ltd, Pony Pie invited ticketed guests to enjoy an evening in the warm atmosphere of the Shandon Belles where they were served a delicious three-course meal freshly prepared by two exceptional young chefs and served by a (volunteer!) force of professional front-of-house staff. The menu saw guests enjoy a salad of Arran mustard gnoccihi with white beetroot and goats’ cheese, and later a chicken ballantyne filled with langoustine mouse or an original smoked kale and cheesy polenta dish, before finishing the night with a trio of homemade puddings, coffee, tea and whiskey tablet! As if that wasn’t enough this menu featured freshly picked vegetables from friendly, local allotment farmers and donated meat from Mull’s Ethical Shellfish Company.
A remarkable atmosphere was created by two talented musicians who shared their talents for the evening. Glasgow-based singer Oscar Balmeseda crooned as canapes and wine were served, while the meal was accompanied by Brian Nail of the band The Last Best West.
And finally guests had the chance to win a variety of items in a prize draw that closed the evening. The generousity of friends, families and business partners cannot be understated when it comes to this prize draw:
- One year’s membership of Streetcar – the UK’s largest pay-as-you-go car club, with numerous VW and BMW cars parked around Glasgow and Edinburgh (and hundreds more in other UK cities) available for members to rent by the hour, day, week or longer (RRP £59.50)
- One festival pass to Arches Live – including How Keanu Reeves Saved the World (RRP £28)
- Two tickets to Death Disco at the The Arches
- One family pass to the Arches Christmas show Pinocchio
- £50 restaurant voucher for Two Fat Ladies
- £25 restaurant voucher for Cookie on Nithsdale Road, Glasgow
- A lady’s hair accessory by Glasgow designer Lushtings
- A handmade quilt and crocheted scarf by California craftswoman Laura Hoffmann
- A quilted wall hanging inspired by the Glasgow cityscape from Carol Monfrooe
All of this for just £25! That was the going price for a memorable night out during which many laughs were had, plenty of wine was drunk, and some amazing food went down the hatch. Between Oscar’s ballads and Brian’s banjo the night was a terrific example of how fundraising can be enjoyable value for money and directly support the creation of new work.
What’s the Pony Pie Fête in aid of?
Proceeds from the Fête went toward the development and production of How Keanu Reeves Saved the World, a new performance using puppetry, masks, and live music in a highly visual drama that capitalises on the foibles of one individual to anchor a more broad critique of a post-industrial culture that has been plunged into “the desert of the real.” The project premiered September 24th and 25th at Arches Live. More on the project can be found here.
As an early-career artist operating in uncertain financial times, Pony Pie wanted to explore alternative means of generating financial support and creating genuine enthusiasm for its work. Taking its cue from several American theatre companies, Pony Pie aimed to engage a spectrum of benefactors across artistic disciplines and other creative professions, people that genuinely appreciate the inherent value of new voices/experimentation and who are willing to invest in its actualization. Things aren’t going to get any easier or simpler to raise funds for new work and certainly not through conventional routes. The generosity and foresightedness of Two Fat Ladies Ltd. is rare but it is an early example, we believe, of the kind of partnerships that will help small, independent theatre makers successfully earn the support of benefactors. We hope you’ll find that this collaboration with Two Fat Ladies was great way to support not only an exciting new production but also alternative fundraising platforms.
After the success of this fundraiser we have decided to stage another in 2011. Positive feedback on the fête and growing ambitions to re-stage “How Keanu Reeves Saved the World,” we believe it will be a bigger and better event. If you’d like to take part in the fundraiser as a business partner or as a performer or entertainment please be in touch. And if you’d like to attend we would like to welcome you! Check back for details about next year’s fête in the new year.
In the meantime, please support with your custom those businesses that supported the event with their generous donations. Don’t forget to mention that you appreciate their acknowledgment and contribution of and to the arts through their partnership with Pony Pie. This way we can ensure future partnerships and more new work!