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Request for Proposals: Development Consultant for Why Not Theatre

About Why Not Theatre
Founded in 2007, Why Not Theatre is an award-winning independent Toronto-based theatre company with an international scope. Under the Artistic Director Ravi Jain and Artistic Producers Owais Lightwala and Kelly Read, Why Not has established a reputation as a company synonymous with inventive, experimental, cross-cultural collaborations resulting in shows featuring new Canadian writing, company-devised and site-speci c shows, alongside revitalized interpretations of classics. The company has also become known for its presentation of international productions from diverse cultures and artistic practices, along with support for the development of local emerging artists and companies. Essential to our creative process are the collisions that arise from our different cultures, languages and experiences provoking us to seek new styles, stories and forms.

Some of the company’s recent successes include A Brimful of Asha (written, directed and featuring Ravi Jain alongside his real-life mother), Iceland (written by Nicolas Billon, directed by Ravi Jain), Butcher (written by Nicolas Billon, directed by Weyni Mengesha), Like Mother, Like Daughter (in partnership with Complicite Creative Learning) and The RISER Project (a collaborative producing model for emerging artists), more at

Project Summary
In 2017, Why Not Theatre celebrates 10 years as an independent theatre company with over 14 new productions, 14 co-productions, 21 international presentations and workshops, 12 presentations of local artists and 63 tour stops in 21 cities under our belt. We premiered our first production in 2007, incorporated as a non-profitin 2013 and currently operate a $500k+ (and growing) operating budget with 3 full-time staff, with ongoing multi-year funding from the Canada Council, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council and Canadian Heritage. We do not have our own venue, and produce and present our work in a variety of venues across the city, most frequently at The Theatre Centre, and have previously partnered with Soulpepper Theatre, Factory Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Canadian Stage, Luminato Festival, Mirvish Productions, and Summerworks Festival amongst others.

As we enter our 10th year of work, we are looking to hire a professional and experienced Development Consultant to work with us over the next 4-6 months and help us build and implement an organizational fundraising strategy focused on private sector fundraising, including individual donors, foundations and corporate sponsors. The role would also involve advising on the recruitment and training of permanent development staff to continue implementation and management of fundraising strategies, databases and materials. Working with you, we are hoping to increase our fundraising capacity and annual private sector revenue goals to be a signi cant percentage of future operating budget and better support our consistent growth.

The successful partner will help us achieve the following goals through this engagement:

● Secure charitable status, allowing donors to receive tax receipts for their contributions to the company (currently underway)

● Outline a multi-year company fundraising strategy focused on the private sector with short, mid and long-term deliverables

● Help build and advise on a database of corporate, foundation, and individual donors

● Develop effective strategies to ensure high standards of donor cultivation and engagement

● Work with us to set and achieve short and long-term targets for private sector revenue

● Develop suf cient private sector revenues to employ permanent salaried position(s) to manage long-term development strategy

● Train and equip current and new staff with tools to continue long-term development strategy

The budget for this project is $15,000, and includes:

● Consultation fee for duration of engagement

● Costs related to research and implementation of fundraising tools

The budget does not include costs related to fundraising events and additional contract staff outside the scope of the goals above. If you would like to propose a different budget structure please outline how your deliverables would relate to the proposed budget.

Proposal Requirements
A completed proposal should include the following:

● Company/Individual Pro le with listing of prior experience (particularly with non-pro t and theatre sector)

● Cover Letter including introduction, and outline of proposal including cost, potential timeline and deliverables (max 1-2 pages)

● References

Completed proposals should be submitted to in pdf format by end of day March 17th, 2017.

Proposed Project Timeline

● Development of short and long term fundraising strategy with Why Not Theatre executive team - March 20 to May 20, 2017

● Assist in completing charitable status application - March 20 to March 31, 2017

● Begin donor cultivation activities during the run of our 10th year marquee

production: Prince Hamlet - April 17 to 29, 2017 and the RISER Project - April 16 to

May 14, 2017

● Plan and implement donor engagement activities - May 15 to Sept 30, 2017

● Research and develop foundation and corporation database, contacts and applications - Apr 1 to Sept 30, 2017

● Develop and implement recruitment and training for long term permanent development roles - July 1 to Sept 30, 2017


Timelines are proposals and subject to change based on mutual agreement between us.
Contact Information

Questions regarding this request for proposal and any information outlined herein should be directed to:

Kelly Read
Artistic Producer, Why Not Theatre


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