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UTC reassesses funding after F-board reform

By liorac

Section: Front Page, News

February 1, 2008

Following a reform last semester barring chartered clubs from charging admissions to events, Undergraduate Theater Collective clubs are requesting more funding, according to F-board chair Max Wallach ’09.

Wallach wrote in an e-mail, “I’m happy to say that UTC clubs are requesting more then ever before. Since the reform was announced, we have been asking clubs to make sure that they request enough money to put on quality shows without any expected income from tickets and they have certainly [risen] to the challenge. There has never been more demand for SAF money and we are looking forward to an excellent semester of UTC shows free.”

The myBrandeis club page shows that all UTC groups were granted the full amount of their requests by F-board. While certain UTC clubs donated their ticket profits to charity last semester, leftover money goes into their fundraising accounts, F-board member Emily Moignard ’09 explained.

Moignard added that Liquid Latex “withdrew their funding request so they could charge [for] tickets.”

According to Brandeis Ensemble Theater treasurer, Suri Ellerton ’10, the new provisions required her group to think more carefully about show budgets. “In some ways, it’s a good thing [because] it made us a lot more specific on what we needed,” she said.

BET requested and received nearly $2700 according to the myBrandeis club page. While BET received nearly $1000 more this semester than last semester, Ellerton explained that last semester’s requests were atypical and that this “semester’s show is more expensive than average.”

Even so, Ellerton acknowledged that BET requested slightly more because of the new rules.

Hillel Theater Group president Scott Moerdler ’08 explained via e-mail his concern about F-board’s ability to provide his group with enough funding after last semester’s reform. As such, “when putting together our budget for the show,” he wrote, “we readjusted what we asked for because we no longer could rely on ticket sales to pay for certain items…[but] we did not limit our budget in any way.”

He added, “we were very pleased when we got the funding we need to produce the same quality show that we usually do.”

“We got every cent that we asked for and I’m very confident that we asked for enough,” said Boris’ Kitchen treasurer Mike Martin ’09. “I feel that [Union Treasurer] Choon [Woo Ha ’08] stood by his promise to give the theater clubs what they needed.”

Martin explained that Ha’s reform “got rid of two sizable fees.” According to Martin, UTC clubs previously had to pay show fees up to $300. “Without having to pay that…we were able to ask for a little bit less but still ask for enough to get everything we need,” Martin said.

While not part of UTC, the Vagina Club’s annual production of “The Vagina Monologues” is affected by Ha’s reform.

In previous years, the Vagina Club has relied on F-board for production costs, club member Amanda DiSanto ’09 explained via e-mail. They raised money for other programming from various sources within the university. This year, the club asked F-board to cover production costs and the costs of events.

The club, which relied on ticket sales for donations to charities benefiting women, will attempt to raise money for donations from within the Brandeis community and from outside sources, DiSanto explained.

“We had no expectations of receiving more from F-board this semester. In light of the new F-board reform our goal was to reallocate money as opposed to just asking for more,” she said. To do this, the club “attempted to minimize the production cost of ‘The Vagina Monologues.’”

“In the end, we were granted an amount of money comparable to that of previous years,” she wrote. The Vagina Club received approximately one third of the money they requested from the F-board.

“This is going to be a transitional semester,” Martin commented. “We’re all trying to make this work.” He added, “as long as F-board keeps making it possible [not to charge admissions], we’ll keep doing it.”

Pat Garofalo contributed to this report.

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