Valentine’s fundraiser benefits new cause
by Holly Brown
The Singing Valentines fundraiser may be familiar, but this year the old campus favorite is generating funds for a slightly different cause.
Singing Valentines, formerly a service provided exclusively by Transy on Broadway (TOB), is being conducted by the Transylvania Theater Guild for 2012.
While both groups are student-led and centered on drama, TOB specializes in musicals, while the Guild focuses on straight, nonmusical plays.
In past years, both groups presented annual productions, but due to funding and restructuring in the theater department, the groups have decided to alternate their productions, with the guild putting on a play this year and TOB waiting to present its next show in 2013.
Due to the change in production schedules, TOB has a shortage of members at present and was unable to host its annual fundraiser. Because the guild has a significant portion of overlapping members, and because it is the student organization that will need funding for a play this year, it decided to take over the fundraiser.
In addition to the change in production schedules, the guild and TOB will soon combine into a single student theater group and join their accounts.
“This also prevents the two groups from inadvertently competing with one another in their fundraising attempts,” said senior Robin Kunkel, Theater Guild president. “There will still be musical theater at Transy. We will alternate musicals and straight plays.”
For those unfamiliar with Singing Valentines, the fundraiser essentially sells singing telegrams that can be delivered to anyone on — and sometimes off — campus. Each valentine is $2, and the song can be anything that the sender chooses.
“People often send Singing Valentines to their boyfriend or girlfriend, but they’re also a funny way to just brighten a friend’s day. They’re more often sent to friends as a silly prank,” Kunkel said.
The guild’s production for this year, which the fundraiser will support, is “Rough Magic.” This play conjures up a magical universe in which an unlikely quartet of heroes must defeat the evil sorcerer Prospero.
“It’s going to be amazing and very unlike anything that has been previously done at Transy, at least in recent years,” said junior Laura Campbell, guild secretary.
In another change from previous years, “Rough Magic” will be put on with full departmental support, as a class rather than an independent production. Students will still direct, produce, design and act the show, but it will benefit from greater faculty support than the group has enjoyed in the past.
The guild has high hopes for the fundraiser’s success.
“In the past, the fundraiser has raised at least half of the funds necessary to pay for the expenses of the show, including royalties,” said Campbell.
Though today is the last day that Guild members will be formally selling Singing Valentines in the Rafskeller, members always welcome last-minute purchases. They encourage students to come to them with requests Feb. 13 and 14 when they are delivering the valentines.
“It’s an opportunity for students to do something sweet for significant others or friends, or an opportunity to poke some well-meaning fun at professors and peers,” Campbell said.