The highlighting event of my fundraising effort took place last Friday, August 12th. My boyfriend Michael and I hosted a multi-act concert at WeWork in the Northern Liberties neighborhood of Philadelphia. The concert featured two local solo artists (India Boat and Mandrin), a four-piece live-instrumentation electronic band from Brooklyn (CMYK), and the debut of Michael’s and my band/duo, The Premise.
This event was both unbelievably exciting and extremely stressful. It’s by far the biggest event I’ve ever pulled together, and I’m frankly surprised it went as smoothly as it did. The week beforehand I was consumed with thoughts about timing, amount and types of food and drink, safe and legal alcohol distribution, furniture arrangements, non-obnoxious donation collection techniques, donation containers and how to make them cute, thank you gifts, stage banter and M.C.-ing strategies, audio requirements, etc. etc. etc.
That’s all completely aside from the anxiety of performing live for the first time in years! I was addicted to the high of performing music in high school, but have barely stepped on a stage in the past six years. I was worried we were under-prepared and wasn’t happy all week unless we were practicing.
Side note: the lyrics to Seven Nation Army are inane and impossible to remember and I hate them.
But three nights of practice and a couple cheat sheets later, we pulled it off. I was ecstatic with how we performed and how everybody else sounded. Despite some small technical problems and starting a little late, it all went smoothly and was SO much fun. It was particularly wonderful to see all of our friends and family mingling and it was clear that everybody had a good time.
And as a bonus, the event was a much more successful fundraiser than I had anticipated. After event costs, we raised roughly a month of living expenses in Punta Gorda. I can’t believe how generous and supportive everybody was — thank you all!
Now onward to the last two weeks of being in Philadelphia. Things are about to get hectic.