Mudcat Café message #2602070 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #119211   Message #2602070
Posted By: The Villan
01-Apr-09 - 07:47 AM
Thread Name: Tom Bliss Article -So long and thanks
Subject: RE: Tom Bliss Article -So long and thanks
>>Y'know, the sort who have a day job which leaves (they say) insufficient time to run their venue. They "haven't time" to sort out an adequate dressing room or overnight accommodation for guest artists or ensure that they are paid the rate for the job. Indeed they often resent paying them at all. It may be a minority but one is one too many and yes, performers can and do vote with their feet.<<

Whilst I agree with Diane's comments above, it is not always feasable or possible to manage all of those things, irrespective of whether you are working or not.

When I book a guest, the fee is normally the first thing that is agreed. I tend to ask what their fee is, knowing what I can afford. More often than not the fees tend to fall into what I can afford, so there is normally no further discussion on that point. If the fee is more than I expected, I then have to be very open about what I can afford and ask them if they are prepared to meet my amount. there is always negotiation, but it is always up to the performer if they want to accept or not. If we can't agree, there isn't a booking. No hard feelings - move on to the next.
I always check if they are going to require being put up and deal with that accordingly.Always, the performer get a private room with a bed and breakfast next morning.
I then ask if they need a meal on arrival and that is never a problem from our point of view. If they want a meal, they get one.
We are limited for changing rooms, however, we can normally offer the kitchen, which is very clean and normally big enough to use.

Thats how we work and I am sure many other organisers adopt the same procedure.

Thats the easy part.

The hard work part is doing all the promotion to ensure we get a large enough audience to cover the cost. We never assume that people will turn up. We make sure people are made aware of each event. Its then up to them if they turn up or not.

On the day the stage and chairs have to be laid out. The bar has to be stocked up and everything clean and tidy before the audience arrives.

We have our own PA technicians who arrive at 5pm to set up the PA an be ready for the performers to soundcheck them by 7pm.

We try to make all visitors feel welcome and our main concern from that point on is that we all enjoy the evening, including the performers.

Its one massive jig saw puzzle, but we are fortunate enough to have some very dedicated people who are able to get on with their part of the jigsaw puzzle independantlyand knwo what they are doing, and we all pull together to make the whole event come together.

Afterwards its the taking down the PA clearing chairs and stage and making the hall ready for the next day.

A lot of hard work, but very rewarding. All of the above needs to be seemless, so that people paying to see the concert, have an enjoyable evening.

It requires a group of hardworking people who are dedicated to making it happen, and thats exactly where the above comment by Diane is so relevant.