Dear Friend, Supporter, Fighter:
The Brick has always felt a little contrarian.
Take fundraising letters. We admit we don't like them. Don't like sending them, because talking about how broke you are and how important your mission is and how we need your support this year more than ever, more than any year ever in the history of The Brick, even more than last year (when we said the same thing), and how we heard just the other day from a charmed theatregoer who saw his first show at The Brick, it was a riveting experience and his eyes glistened with moist happiness as he told the story of how ..... how .....
Sorry, where were we?
Yes. Money. Yes. Need. Please send.
Go here: www.bricktheater.com/donationpage
To the point, here is
THE YEAR IN BRICK: 2009
BLOOD, CARTILAGE AND PROTESTANT CLOWNS ABOUND!
(1) The Brick's stage was awash in blood this year. From the conclusion of Penny Dreadful, the smash horror series, to the medieval surgery of The Nosemaker's Apprentice to the Vampiric Space Amazon of Fassbinder's Blood on the Cat's Neck to the chef stylings of Titus Andronicus and the carnage of The Blood Brothers present ... The New Guignol. Also, there were Protestants and clowns. Who drink blood. (For the full 2009 line-up: click here.)
"SMALL BUT MIGHTY"
(2) Time Out New York measured our bust-line in an elite roundup of the Best Cheap Off-Off Broadway theaters. Called us "small but mighty." That's right.
THE BRICK PROVIDES DRUGS!
(3) Theatrical drugs, that is. We cheerfully raised our collective finger to the Depression (sorry, Recession) with The Antidepressant Festival. The New York Times responded, "No one tops the Brick Theater when it comes to oddball concepts for theater festivals." One drug-addled piece, Suspicious Package: Rx, was chosen for publication in Plays and Playwrights 2010 (New York Theatre Experience). Audiences also raised their collective finger to the Recession: attendance increased a whopping 43% from The Brick's prior summer fest.
HAILED AT 30,000 FEET!
STUNNING HONOR BESTOWED, DANCING ENSUES
(5) The New York Innovative Theatre Awards bestowed its honorary Caffe Cino Fellowship Award on The Brick - given annually to "an Off-Off Broadway theatre company that consistently produces outstanding work" (as featured in The New York Times). The Brick accepted the award by sending 20 of its loyalists (including roller-skaters) onstage to dance to the Commodores' "Brick House." The awards host then stated: "I don't really know what we just saw."
MORE DAMNED BLOOD!
Taimak of the legendary fight film, The Last Dragon). Among the offerings, Piper McKenzie's Craven Monkey and the Mountain of Fury cut a swath through Man's bloody evolution, Last Life had the world's final inhabitants literally wrestling for control in a "fightsical," while The Ninja Cherry Orchard racked up a puzzling Chekhovian body-count of 63 characters. We're still cleaning the blood off the marleys.
BRICK ALUMS OVERWHELM "PEOPLE OF THE YEAR"!
YOU ARE AMPLY PRAISED!
(8) You: You answered our fundraising plea last year, radically increasing our donor pool, and bolstered our ticket sales by coming to see many, many Brick shows. Our tentative conclusion on reviewing the year-end books (subject to the accountants!) is that for the first time in The Brick's 7-year history, we're covering all of our costs in 2009 through outside donations, grants and ticket sales. Wow.
We could wrap up with the typical fundraising plea and exhort: It's not enough! We need to do more! To get to that next level! etc. etc.
But for a moment we want to celebrate. You out there made all of the above happen in 2009. The Brick is a unique place. Please continue to give (www.bricktheater.com/donationpage - only 10 more days to get that tax write-off!) - and to come see the shows. You keep us doing what we're doing.
Michael, Robert, Hope, Jeff, Gyda, Ian, Berit
and the 200-plus Bricklayer volunteers
A copy of our latest annual report may be obtained, upon request, from us directly or from the New York State Attorney General's Charities Bureau, Attn: FOIL Officer, 120 Broadway, New York, NY 10271.