With only three weeks to go, Berkeley Rep’s biggest fundraiser, or “Party of the Year,” needed to be converted into a virtual event celebrating the resilience of the theatre and its loyal patrons. They wanted to keep the momentum from existing peer-to-peer fundraising while still honoring their special guest and community of artists.
The theatre’s annual gala, “OVATION: Celebrate the Transformative Power of Theatre,” went virtual to honor actor, writer, and teacher Anna Deavere Smith. The event featured special tributes and a conversation between Anna, Artistic Director Johanna Pfaelzer, and Managing Director Susie Medak about the power of theatre to restore, inspire, and bring communities together. Berkeley Rep displayed the live and pre-recorded videos on its Event Page, their event sponsors, donor rewards, recipes for at-home cocktails, and a donor wall with a fundraising progress circle.
Overall, Berkeley Rep raised over $950,000, $400,000 of which was raised before pivoting to a virtual event. In the remaining three weeks, they raised nearly $550,000 through peer-to-peer and online fundraising, all while maintaining the support of sponsors and building their artistic community.
Berkeley Rep has been creating ambitious theatre that entertains and challenges its audiences, provokes civic engagement, and inspires people to experience the world in new and surprising ways since 1968.
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