A new Kickstarter campaign has been launched by a nonprofit theater company seeking to purchase the historic Slave Theater in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, and restore it.
The New Brooklyn Theater, who launched the campaign, say that their plans are to "turn it into a performing arts center with three stages that will develop the work of Brooklyn artists for Brooklyn audiences."
The Slave Theater hasn't been operational since 1998, but a dispute over ownership allowed various tenants and events to take place until this February, when the outdoor patio collapsed and the building was sealed off. It was purchased as the Regal Theatre in 1984 by Judge John L. Phillips, who renamed it, he said, to remind the neighborhood of its history. Phillips died in 2008 without a will.
"We are raising the $200,000 down payment in this way because we are willing to put our vision up to a vote of public opinion," says the New Brooklyn's Artistic Director Jonathan Solari. "When the Kickstarter campaign ends, if we are successful, we will approach our many potential corporate funders and development partners with something quite valuable, a mandate."
The campaign has raised just over $15,000 so far; 56 days remain.