the Calico Buffalo, a Musical

by EJ Stapleton


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Hi, my name is EJ Stapleton. I’m here to ask for your help.

Some of you already know what we’re up to. For those of you who don’t, here’s the scoop.

On September 01, 2001, with great reviews in hand, my first children’s book, ‘The Calico Buffalo”, was introduced to the world. Ten days later, everything changed.

We had 7000 copies of the book on hand. We wanted them out in the world. So, over the next eight years, we gave ‘em away to anyone who wanted them. Organizations like the Military Children’s Educators Coalition, the Books from the Heart Foundation in Washington, DC, the Dollywood Literacy Foundation, you get the picture. To date, about 6500 copies have been given away. I figured once the last of the books were gone, that would be the end of it. Well…not so much.

Two years ago, out of the blue, I got a call from my friend Cynthia, who insisted I should create a musical based on the Calico Buffalo. I balked, I nayed, I pooh-poohed. She’d have none of it. She told me in no uncertain terms, “I think you can pull it off!” 48 hours later, we were off and running. We are now in the second year of development. The script is beyond anything I could have imagined. The music? Magical. Like nothing I’ve ever heard. This project has attracted phenomenal artists to the team. NY theater director, Craig J. George, award winning film maker, Gabriel Folse, Disney Fellow, Michael J. Canales and Grammy award winning composer, Peter Stopschinski, all in. And they’re all in on spec. Nobody’s getting paid. There’s no budget, no dough. We find out what we need when we need it. Then we go get it. We’ve held table reads in both Austin and New York. Two powerhouse producers are now in the conversation. We are very close to the goal line.

We have two major events coming up. One I’ve got covered. The other is the next table read in NYC. This time, we need to bring all of the development team to New York. It’s an expensive effort. Airfares, hotel rooms, the works. I know so many of us are getting hit left and right for donations these days. I also know how tight money is, so if you can’t help I understand completely. But, if you’re thinking about it, please remember it doesn’t have to be big, to be great. A buck, five bucks, ten bucks at a time is all it takes to make this happen. Every donation, in our eyes, is huge. And we’ve got “thank you” prizes! Check ‘em out.

We’re on the adventure of a lifetime. The stuff that dreams are made of. And we need you to be a part of it. I know that with your help we will make this dream, a dream come true. Thank you so much for your consideration. You are, each of you, dream makers. Never give up. Never surrender!

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