StillWaters, KickStarter and Hi-Tech Cardboard Creativity…

Teaching college has been an energizing event. It’s a nice reminder as the grown-ups have difficulty getting along that there is a great batch of excited, imaginative youth coming up the road – ready to disrupt with gusto.

What I’m seeing up close now is the impact new tools have on the ability jump-start ideas.  Wasn’t that long ago that the VC’s of Silicon Valley were the enlightened financial doorkeepers to the innovation community. They’re still driving – but new tools are bringing the ability to drive entrepreneurship downstream. Moving from a technical focus to all things business.

A few years ago I described Cardboard Theatre, a production my daughter helped initiate. She’s at it again this time using the latest start-up tool on the net – KickStarter.

Three things I’ve noticed about KickStarter:

  • It’s a great pre-order tool – allowing start-ups to get the customers they need before investing in production.
  • It’s a great Creative’s Tool – Many art and theater projects are finding funding through the site. It’s provides ‘patrons’ for performances just getting off the ground.
  • It’s a great social tool – The goal is to raise money for something you would like to see happen. Sometimes there is a deliverable (a product) sometimes a happening, always a thank you.

By creating a way for interested parties to invest in an idea – with clear indications about what they can expect if it is accomplished – a whole new world is opened for getting imaginative projects off the ground.

Sarah’s latest project is the Stillwaters Street Theater Project (Kickstarter link) – bringing voice to the millennium generation.

“A generation shaped by the advent of Myspace, Facebook, blogging, and twitter we [the millennial generation] find ourselves surrounded by a wealth of opportunity to communicate.  Suddenly supporting a cause is as easy as hitting a “like” button and just as easy to forget.  Where generations before us had to step onto the streets to express their voice ours does it from the safety of a computer keyboard.  Our voices merge into the deceptively still waters of our generation.

The purpose of the Still Waters Street Theatre Project is to explore the depths of this generation in the public forum of the streets of the Bay Area through original works created by the voices of this generation.  We have three great shows by three great playwrights.”

Advanced communication explored through the oldest form of communication where the revolution began. I find it to be an interesting confluence of ideas made possible by an advanced method of funding.

Cool. Hi-tech cardboard creativity.

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7 Responses to StillWaters, KickStarter and Hi-Tech Cardboard Creativity…

  1. Kay Plantes says:

    Fred – I agree so much with you. The open market is even removing barriers to entry to venture capital and angel investing! I loved my years teaching college (not the research part) as I was reminded of the spirit of youth. I want my daughter Lauren to meet your daughter when Lauren graduates from college. She is at Bates college studying rhetoric, theater and dance with the Improve Comedy team her major avocation outside artistic endeavors linked to classes. I keep telling her she’s perfectly design to be a performance artist speaking out on important causes! She wants to settle in SF — perfect for meeting your kid!
    Best, K

  2. Fred says:

    Hi Kay, SF is a great place and my daughter seems to be enjoying it immensely. Let me know when Lauren is heading out and I’m sure we can make something happen. Fred

  3. Bill says:

    good point — good site — good cause — maybe the Millenials can unscrew some of the things my generation have managed to screw-up. Tell Sarah that an OOG (official old guy) says to keep it up.

  4. Fred says:

    Thanks Bill, I’ll send greetings. 🙂

  5. J.D. Meier says:

    > the ability to drive entrepreneurship downstream
    That’s a beautiful thing!

  6. Fred says:

    Hi J.D.,
    It’s exciting. I’ve been working with companies to help them do this in emerging markets – it’s nice to see the principles come home to roost.

  7. Andrew Heaton says:


    I just had a look at the Still Waters introductory video and I must say that it sounds like a wonderful initiative. You must be proud and excited about Sarah’s involvement.

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