Anomaly Theatre Project Proposal
Owner and Founder: Ms. Abigail Dillard
Company Name: The Anomaly Theatre Project
Company Address: Non-permanent, these plans are made to be able to present to any church
or non-profit organization that would be willing to support and share space with this program.
“Our purpose is to impact the lives of young and growing Christians through a form of creative and presentational productions of theatre, with an inspirational background and message that follows the Gospel of Jesus Christ and spreads the Word of God into the lives of our audience and fellow volunteers, encouraging others and seeking always to be committed and knowledgeable students that collaborate the use of our God-given talents and resources.”
~Abigail Dillard 2014 with the Anomaly Theatre Project
“We see the Anomaly Theatre Project as an engaging, spirit-filled, creative collective of young adults, numbering throughout the U.S., impacting our cities, our nation and our world through the imaginative means of a theatre environment with a church related foundation.”
~Abigail Dillard 2014 with the Anomaly Theatre Project
The Anomaly Theatre Project
‘But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”’
1 Samuel 16:7
The Millennials is the name of my generation. Thom and Jess Rainer, the authors of the book The Millennials: Connecting to America's Largest Generation, reported that eighty-seven percent of us have something in common, our lack of faith. Only thirteen percent of the Millennials considered any type of spirituality to be important in their lives. Well, I’m a part of that thirteen percent and it crushes me to think about what the rest of my generation is missing. There is a theory that we are too young to understand what we are denouncing, but I don’t believe it. I think the largest reason some don’t believe is it is one less connection we have with our parents. My generation thrives on being independent and stubborn.
Every Sunday I would go to a Sunday school class, a casual service, and Youth Group. At Sunday school, I would sit in a room full of mostly apathetic teenagers with mentors trying to engage us in a meaningful discussion about the bible. Besides the basic answer of “Jesus died for our sins”, “God loves everyone”, and “follow the Golden Rule,” there are few comments. At casual service it gets better. ‘The Band’ leads us in four up-beat and contemporary songs, and then our assistant pastor steps up to lead us in technologically advanced sermon with a PowerPoint, movie clip, and his personal anecdotes. I sit with my youth group and we join in song, but when we get to the sermon, we don’t stop talking. Every mundane, unimportant conversation you can think of goes on in the second row of church. In the afternoon, some of us go back to church for Youth Group. We play a few games, eat a snack supper, have announcements, view a short program and then go home. The majority of those kids don’t think about God until the next Sunday when they show up to do their routine again.
It’s disappointing to think that my generation’s spiritual involvement revolves around entertainment, friends, and rewards. That’s not how God’s love works, and a few summer’s ago I was tired of living that way. The youth directors started a youth council, and I jumped at the chance to get involved. The only spot available was Worship Leader. I took the position and began the fight for my youth group’s spiritual journey.
Like other generations we have a tendency not to respect our elders. We strive so hard for independence that we don’t realize all of what we were pushing away. We used to barely listen to each other, until now. My first worship service was on the subject of temptation. I was ready to show my friends what I believed God was begging them to hear. With the Bible, my Touch Points book (a book of God’s promises), and my own narratives, I went through my sermon with a once in a lifetime-captivated audience. Then I got to my film. It was a YouTube video on the Lifehouse Everything skit. It didn’t work. It wouldn’t play and the music was barely audible. All the mentors came rushing trying to help while the rest of my youth group was slowly and visibly going back into their apathetic comas. I told the mentors to go back and that it was okay. I was going to act it out.
I began explaining the background of the two characters in the film, the girl and the man who symbolized God. I got through the creation of the girl and how she was purely devoted to just him. Then the other characters came in. Lust, greed, alcohol, vanity, and depression came in the story, leading to the girl showing suicidal actions. Then I broke down. It hit me that the God figure is still a whole part of the story. He was there the whole time, on the side, on his knees, crying for the girl to let him help and to allow him back in her life. She simply looks and slightly reaches for him at the end, after going through all those experiences, and He pushes the rest of those sins out of her life. It was grace. I was on my knees begging my Youth group to look at their lives and reach for God. At that point everyone was crying. The picture of God literally and physically crying for them opened their eyes.
I now know that my entire Youth group is a part of that thirteen percent. We began making it a special project to invite kids to our church to experience God’s grace. God is extremely important to me. His existence is crucial for my well being. This experience is one of the reasons I’ve developed such an avid interest in combining religious studies and theatre. I had always been involved in theatre, having done productions at my school since kindergarten. As I was approaching my college search process I realized that I couldn’t give up this creative outlet. Then I began to think. Who say I have to give it up? The process of creating this proposal began. As you continue to read, you will find a proposal for a supplemental theatre program to be offered through a church environment. I have future plans to go to seminary and make spreading the Word my personal mission to better the life of the Millennials and future generations through this project.
Theatre is a great way to express your creativity. This program could be responsible for giving the shy kid in your group a chance to blossom into a fantastic public speaker. It could allow for the demanding student to be put in a position to develop leadership skills through stage management work and directing. This could be an art form you didn’t know you were looking for to be an outlet to grow and develop a large group of teenager and young adults into impactful persons willing and ready to spread the Word of God through an overarching message showcased in a production. Or maybe you already have students willing to do that but they need this opportunity. You decide.
As for me, I’m willing to share what I know to develop a project your students would become fully invested in.
Thank you for your consideration,
Owner and Founder
The Anomaly Theatre Project
“Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”
1 Timothy 6:12
My name is Abigail Dillard and currently I am a student at Centenary College of Louisiana. I’m pursuing a major in theatre with a minor in religious studies with the hopes of going into seminary after graduation. After seminary, with the hopes of having a connection with a church, I would like to come into churches and set up an outreach theatre program.
I want to create an outreach program through the theatre. Theatre has so many facets that people of all walks of life can find their place and build off their strengths and weaknesses. With the performance side of theatre you have the opportunity to present something, this transitions into the church by having a strong conviction and establishing and discovering many ways to spread the word of God. The technical side offers a more hands on approach; this leads into a mission field to build things up and an example of how to serve people as a Christ follower.
My proposal program is that I would come for a two to three month time period and work with the age of adolescents, 12-22 years, to put on a theatre production. Along with this theatre program, the participants of the program would have a say on the show chosen, would help fill every technical and performing position, and would also go through a correlating bible study based off a theme pulled from the show.
In these two to three months, the participants would go through a rehearsal process, build a set, collect props, set up technical equipment, have outside mission opportunities, work on possibly undiscovered skills and talents, present a show, complete a bible study with a pre-determined theme, and raise donations for a charitable organization.
The audiences for this performance will more than likely mainly consist of the congregation of the church the program is set at but also be open to the surrounding community. Ticket prices will be in effect as a way to raise money for an outside charitable organization or mission opportunity in the area that the participants discussed during the bible study.
Products and Services
Below is a list of what I would provide during my two-three month time period at each location. After the proposal of the program I would hopefully then be in contact with a board or advisor for my production. I would then propose a production and would contain the following materials. This is subject to change based on the congregation of the church but should be decently standard.
Participants would receive:
-A Play proposal
*This would include a script, logistics of the play, preliminary set designs, costume designs, and prop needs. It would also contain a concept piece, a scenic break down and example schedule.
-A Budget Proposal with the owner’s set salary
-A Full Production Experience
-A two to three month bible study base on the concept piece
-A two to three month calendar
*This would contain scheduled events, rehearsal times, and production dates
-A cast from the community and congregation
-Workmanship and Art from the community
-A Found Space Theatre Experience
-Basic Scenic Work skills
-Equipment and Board Work Experiences
-Confidence Boost to Young Adults
-Public Speaking and Performance Skills
-(Optional)A Chance to offer specific classes in any of the following
*Movement, Improv, Scene Work, Mask Work, Sculpture, Directing, Monologue work, and Audition Work, and Bible Study Courses
Funding and a Financial Plan
My Understanding of Funding for a Church
Churches are responsible for their own fundraising. The tithes of the congregation make up the budget for a church. The board of trustees decides the split up of the tithes. To gain money for individual programs you would go through staff parish relations committees and that is where you gain approval for your program. They allocate the money and this could guarantee you a percentage of the budget. If you are a movable program you should go and present your program before they decide the allocation.
In the interest of presenting outside, supplemental church programs you should be looking for churches that have large contemporary worship budgets. Also, there is a need to find a community with an interest in religious recreation and a large adolescent aged group in the congregation, reaching ages 12-22.
For proposal purposes, the owner of this program could be hired as an interim youth director. The owner would then have control of the youth budget to put a creative spin on how to run the programs for the interim time.
Sources of Funds
Type of Financing: Investment by the Church, Board of Directors, Offerings, or Outside Sponsorship
Amount Needed*: Roughly $4000
*This can change based on the show being run, the amount of people needed, the space being used, and the duration of time given to the program.
Uses of Funds
Rent Land or Building: My hope is to use a found space on the sight of the church or organization I’m hired by. Therefore paying nothing for the space except possibly budgeting for electrical utilities.
Purchase Computer Equipment: Any sound, lighting, or other technical equipment such as instruments and possibly power tools would need to come with the space provided or be borrowed from the attendees of the church or organization.
Budget: Based on the show chosen. I would estimate that $1,000-$1,500 would be needed to purchase necessary set pieces, props, costumes, and royalty fees of the show.
Owner and Directing Salary: Roughly $2,500-$3,000 for a two to three month program. This is negotiable based on room and board options or in the case of achieving and interim youth director position.
Office Supplies and Publicity Costs: For office supplies, I’m willing to purchase my own based on the salary listed above. For publicity purposes, I would suggest using the main church or organization’s methods of advertising adding a personal blurb to any mail-outs, brochures, posters, e-mails, etc. explaining the organization and production going to be presented.
Ticket Pricing: Each show will have a ticket price, adjustable depending on the congregation. This money would go to off-set any extraneous costs and the rest would be made in donation to the youth group and or a mission opportunity determined by those involved.
The Anomaly Theatre Project at this time is not yet a trademarked name or filed with any non-profit government association. As this is a proposal, the logo and name are subject to change. However, I would like to explain the reasoning behind the name.
From Dictionary.com the word ‘anomaly’ means “a deviation from the common rule, type, arrangement, or form; someone or something that is abnormal or incongruous, or does not fit in; an odd, peculiar, or strange condition, situation, or quality; and an incongruity or inconsistency.” This theatre project is made to be different. I’ve combined theatre, which is normally portrayed in secular realms to discuss topics of all magnitudes, and religion, which is obviously more focused with God at the helm. This program is made to stand out in an effort to draw people in and send God’s message out.
2010 - present
2010 - present