How to Produce Small Concerts
by Jeff Brown, Lis Saya and Mike Sakarias
Updated in 2016 by Meredith Bless
Here’s a guide to producing small concerts I put together several years ago. We updated it a bit, but the basic information is still invaluable for those who wish to organize a concert or similar fund-raiser.
Think back to the last concert you went to. Why did you enjoy it? The sound was great, an intimate atmosphere suited both the performer and the audience, you were able to have cookies and coffee during the intermission, and, all in all, you had a great evening.
The sound was probably good because they had a sound engineer who spent the afternoon setting and testing microphones, running cables, and adjusting the PA to fit the acoustics of the room.
The atmosphere suited the occasion because someone took the time to find lights, set them up, and focus them onto the performing area, which had been arranged with appropriate furniture, plants, and perhaps a wall hanging. You even noticed that all this was done before you arrived for the concert (early, because you wanted a good seat), including a small, attractive pitcher of water for the performer(s). Cookies, juice, and coffee were waiting at intermission, thanks to volunteer bakers. Someone picked them up earlier in the day, along with a coffee maker, coffee, juice, cups, napkins, cream & sugar, and stirring implements.
As the time for the concert approached, the lights dimmed and the emcee gave a short welcome to the audience, introduced the performer(s), and the evening went off without a hitch, except for the one excited person who spilled their juice on their lap and let out an untimely ‘Whoop!”
Pretty easy, right? Well, only if you’ve got an unlimited budget and can hire everyone you need. Most of the time, putting on a concert is serious work. It can be fun too. But if you’re putting on a concert, be ready to do all of the above yourself, including a whole lot more. You’ll probably have help, but be ready to commit a great deal of time and energy. It will be work, but if you’re the type of person who likes seeing happy faces on people, it will be worth it.
It should be stated right now, that if you’re in it for the money, stop reading now. The ultimate objective here is to create a magical communication between the performer(s) and the audience be it mellow new-age or hard-assed rock and roll. Your job is to make it possible for that magic to take place.
That’s not to say there are no financial rewards. Concerts can be an effective way of generating income for radio stations, collectives, or what have you. But they certainly are not cost-effective in terms of the hours spent straightening out the myriad of details. As with most small organizations, volunteer-power is necessary, important, and besides, it’s fun to work together.
This guide is divided into several sections. The first is an overview of the whole process, followed by detailed sections on planning, promoters, publicity, lighting, sound, and finally, a few collected philosophies.
It’s probably safe to say that no one gets into the concert business on purpose. Your organization was approached by an agent, performers themselves, or maybe you got a good deal on a sound system at a garage sale. It’s too late to turn back…here you are!
For the purposes of demonstration, we’ll use a fictional trio, THE REVERB BROTHERS, as our featured performers. They are represented by George Washington, who also handles several other acts (including THE REVERB SISTERS).
“THE REVERB BROTHERS have always wanted to come to/enjoyed their last visit so much/have never seen (insert city). Would you like to do a concert with them?” asks George Washington. After haggling over the price, you finally agree on a date two months away. THE REVERB BROTHERS will arrive at the airport in the late morning, check the hall out, do an interview on radio/TV, do a sound check, rest a bit, have a light dinner, arrive at the hall, and begin playing at eight p.m. You have George send over the bands contract, rider, and any promotional information so you can begin preparations.
They will do two forty-five minute sets, probably an encore, and leave the next morning to their next gig. You and the promoter, George, will probably talk on the phone every week until the concert, after which you will not hear from him again until he calls with another great offer.
You are able to talk a local artist into doing a poster for you. Your contact at the newspaper is alerted of the event. The Arts Council is notified so other events don’t get scheduled to conflict with “your baby.” Press releases get typed and sent to anyone who can use them, local and regional.
THE REVERB BROTHERS need a mixer with eight inputs, two direct boxes, good stage monitors, and plenty of reverb. They play guitars, bass, mandolin, musical saw, and fiddle. Fortunately, one of your volunteers has a sound system they got at a garage sale and is willing to mix the sound. The hall you’ve rented has a small stage with lights already in place.
Deciding to sell tickets in advance, you fill out the form on the Juneau Arts & Humanities Council website on selling tickets through their site (or you have your artist make up a ticket) and maybe have your artist create a Facebook and/or newspaper ad if you’ve got the budget. If you print your own tickets, be sure to number them and give them to local book stores to sell, and be sure to save some tickets as “comps” to be given out to folks who help with the show, bookstores, and radio stations to give away on the air, and other invaluable folks. If you sell tickets through jahc.org you can find details about that here: Selling tickets through the Council (create link)
For information on how to market your event, click the link here: How to Market Your Event (create link)
You’ve already contacted the radio stations and provided them with albums or cassettes of THE REVERB BROTHERS to air. Maybe you’ve even got a station volunteer to make a recorded public service announcement for you.
By the time THE REVERB BROTHERS arrive, the hall and green room is being prepared. For an eight p.m. concert, you should start your set up no later than 4pm And if you want some time to relax, start even earlier. There are ALWAYS things that need doing at the last minute. The stage is set with mikes, one high-backed chair, and a table with a pitcher of room temperature water. By 5pm, the lights and the sound system should be ready for the infamous sound check. Although the band is a little late, and one mike goes belly-up, the sound check really starts at 5:30, and finishes at 6:30, too late for the dinner you’ve spent the previous evening preparing, so you go to the local quick stop. This is the kind of food the band is used to, so it’s no big deal, plus you have found a volunteer to set up a green room for the artist with snacks and beverages per the artists request and dietary needs. To allow for plenty of time for dinner, start your set up process about 2 hours earlier and you should be in the clear, and reservations at a local restaurant helps streamline wait times.
By the time you’ve gotten back to the hall, one speaker has blown a fuse, and it only gets replaced twenty minutes before the show, although no one notices because you have impressed upon your crew the notion of calmness in a storm. After the speaker is fixed, appropriate music is piped in from an iPad or computer running through the board up until concert time (also during intermission).
The audience files in slowly, then a massive pile-up occurs at the door five minutes before the scheduled start time. Slowly, but surely, the audience fills the space, the lights dim, the emcee takes the stage, and your worries are over. Well, not exactly right yet.
Nervously, you pace back and forth in the back of the hall, hearing every word spoken by audience members who came to talk rather than listen. You ask a couple of them to please be quiet, but by the end of the evening you’ve tuned everything out except the idea of sleep. Perhaps you try to hide a bit when the emcee thanks you for organizing the whole evening, although you have already handed them a list of all the people to thank.
The concert ends and a crowd of happy folks file out with smiles on their faces. Hopefully you have succeeded in your efforts and a truly magical event took place. Look carefully at the smiles. That’s what you work for.
Okay, back to finishing things up. Planning ahead, you have arranged for a clean-up crew to help you move speakers & amps, wind cords, sweep and mop, and the thousand of other tasks necessary to bring the hall back to its original or better shape. (You DO want to use the hall again, don’t you?)
After you’ve helped the clean-up crew (Here’s a good point in leadership: Don’t EVER ask anyone to do something unless you are willing to help out!), get with your folks who kept track of the door receipts, and figure out how much to give THE REVERB BROTHERS, if they receive a certain percentage of the gate.
THE REVERB BROTHERS do not live in your town, and it’s common courtesy to make sure they have a good time on the town if they want to. And so, next, you guide them to areas of enjoyment for them; be it bars, restaurants, or just back to their hotel (or a local resident’s house where they are staying). Most people can take care of themselves from this point, but THE REVERB BROTHERS may need a ride to the airport with their equipment on the first plane in the morning. Keep reading, you’re just about finished.
Who helped? Thank them, either in person, by letter, or by a letter to the paper. A letter to the paper is nice because it reaches a lot of people, and it gives your organization a little bit more exposure in a positive light. For really big events, a certificate of appreciation is great.
Let’s break the whole process down into smaller pieces.
CHOOSING A HALL
Where is this event going to take place? A good question, and one that can only be answered by a good knowledge of the halls available. Right now, pull out a piece of paper and write down all the halls you can think of in your community. The list should include place, location, cost, contact name & phone number, and a big space for philosophical considerations. Parking, acoustics, seating, “feeling”, electrical, handicapped access, kitchen & bathroom facilities. Can you serve alcohol there? If you’re in a small community, is it easily accessible for everyone? If you’re in a larger one, does everyone know where it is?
Figured it out yet? Now, see if it’s available. Talk to the manager and let them know exactly what’s happening. If they want you to sign something, read it carefully. Your act may cancel, and leave you minus one rental deposit. Make sure the hall manager or staff knows exactly what you will need, including sound & lighting gear, security personnel (if needed), and electrical outlets. It’s hard to count the number of times we’ve found the closest electrical outlet five feet further than our longest extension cord. If time permits, a site-check ahead of time by your sound and light people can solve many problems before they have a chance to develop.
Being one of the major expenses in producing a concert (unless you can get your performers for free), it’s good to take a look at how you can pay your performer(s) for services rendered.
The performer(s) get a certain amount. The promoter takes the biggest risk here. THE REVERB BROTHERS usually ask for $1000 guaranteed.
The performer(s) get a percentage of the profits. The performer(s) assume the greater risk here, hoping that they will be able to meet expenses. To get them to agree to a percentage, you must convince them that you can promote the concert to the best of your ability AND that people will show up in droves. THE REVERB BROTHERS will agree to no lower than 90%.
GUARANTEE PLUS PERCENTAGE
This is fairly common. It allows the risk to be shared by both parties involved. THE REVERB BROTHERS will accept a guarantee of $500, plus 50% of the net profits.
A word to the wise: The performer’s agent will try to get the best deal they can for their artist(s). It’s their job, and they get a percentage of it. Most of them are good at it. Don’t be intimidated. If you’ve just got to have this performer in concert, you might have to make some concessions.
Otherwise, make sure you get a good deal for both you and the performer(s). Most performers struggle to “make it” and deserve a fair shake. The agents help spread great music all across the country. They have expenses you couldn’t even dream of. Don’t let them take advantage of you, and don’t take advantage of them.
On the other hand, you’ve got to break even. There are a lot of hidden expenses. Make sure you have everything under control before agreeing to any terms with anyone. Know your budget, and work within that.
It’s a shame to arrange a concert, and have minimal attendance because no one knew about it. Please, if you’re going to promote a concert, PROMOTE IT! Make press releases and send them to everyone who can possibly use the information; Social media (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram), local event blogs, television & radio stations, individual DJ’s, local and regional newspapers, newsletters, the area college, local schools, etc.
Sometimes, a good poster design can draw more people than the performers themselves. If you have to pay for it, pay for it, but try to appeal to the designer’s community spirit to get a good deal. You have lots of choices; silk screened posters, hand-made, professionally offset-printed, or the ever-popular results from your local copy center. Computers can make some dynamite posters, and with the reasonable cost of color copies, you can really go to town. Use the best that you feel you can afford and one that will convey the feeling of your event.
See if you can get your performers’ music played on the radio. See if they can be interviewed. If they have recordings, call their record company and ask for them to give to radio stations.
Take as much promotional material as you can to your local newspaper and talk to the person who does the “What’s Happening” stuff. You might get the cover of the weekend section if you’re lucky.
Local cable companies may allow public service announcements. Call them.
Talk to all your friends about it. Get them involved. At least they’ll be going to the event, and they’ll probably tell their friends about it too. Word of mouth can be a great way for free to get the news out about the show.
In short, be creative. We dressed in bright orange jumpsuits and walked around downtown Bellingham to promote a DEVO concert and wore dog-bones on lapel pins to promote the rock group BOW-WOW-WOW. Any others?
Make sure you get the date and time right on the poster. Get a good image to match your performer(s) style. Some photos work great; some don’t. Dover Publications, the Internet (search for “clip art”), and your local library are good resources with art specifically designed for you to cut out and use.
Okay, you’ve got to let people in. What’s the best way? Admission at the door? Tickets in advance? How much to charge? For adults? For kids? These are all questions you’ve got to ask yourself, or else risk talking them to death at a committee meeting. Online options that are universal – brownpapertickets.com or in Juneau, AK, jahc.org.
TICKETS AT THE DOOR
Easiest, the audience pays their way right at the event. The chief advantage is the ease; no tickets to print. The disadvantages are: 1) you have no accurate count of how many people attended (unless you give everyone half of a two-part ticket) and 2) you lose a few dollars in advance ticket sales.
TICKETS IN ADVANCE
For a little more work you have accountability, somewhat of an idea as to how many people might attend ahead of time, and your event has more visibility. You’ll have to design, print, and distribute tickets. Distribution can be by local outlets (music & bookstores), or by members of your organization. To get an accurate count of tickets, you’ll have to number them. You can do that by hand, by a self-advancing rubber stamp unit, or, for really large events, you will have to have them printed by a professional, bonded ticket-printing business. Note that we recommend using your local arts council! Here in Juneau that’s jahc.org.
PRICING YOUR TICKETS
You might ask several people about how much to charge. If you want to break even, you might plan out a budget, and, thinking how many people might attend, divide your cost plus profit by that number. Or you just might look at other events in your community like yours, and go from there.
Think about lower prices for children, seniors, and group prices for families.
What’s on the stage?
Water, or whatever the performer works best on.
A chair, stools, or table.
Monitors (if used).
A plant? Wall hanging? You decide. Keep in mind that the show should be focused on the performer, and not the environment. Usually, the performer will be doing all they can to keep the audience listening; they won’t need the distractions.
Oh yes, make sure there’s room for the musicians, their amps, and any other gear they might need on stage with them. Their tech rider might have some specifications.
WHAT TO TELL THE EMCEE
The emcee is the person that greets the audience and makes them feel at home.
The emcee reminds everyone to respect the performers and their fellow audience members.
The emcee should know at least two jokes. (For an evening containing multiple acts they should know at least seven jokes, the line-up for the evening, and several long stories to pass the time while the microphones are being moved.)
The emcee should have heard the performer(s) music, like it, and be able to express their thoughts concisely.
The emcee should talk with the performer(s) before the show to see if they want anything in particular announced.
The emcee should not have to do anything but emcee.
The emcee might help keep the listening environment clean, which means the emcee might discreetly remind people to shut up.
The emcee announces upcoming events in the community of interest to the audience.
The emcee thanks everyone who helped.
The emcee thanks everyone for coming and being such a great audience.
Then, you thank the emcee.
Remember, thank EVERYONE.
SOUND – A Completely Simple Explanation
It wouldn’t be a concert without sound (well, usually!). The bigger the hall, the bigger the system. Although some groups play without sound reinforcement or travel with their own gear, most will require some sort of amplification. And the more you know about it, the easier you can talk with them or their agent before the event. In this section, we’ll try not to get too technical. But for the most part, if you don’t know anything about sound, get someone who has done it before.
Basically speaking, sound goes into a microphone, changed into an electrical signal, and sent through a wire to a mixer to get “mixed” with other microphones. Then it gets amplified, using an amplifier, and sent via wires to speakers, which then turn it back into sound. Pretty simple, eh?
Sound either goes into microphones or into Direct Input (DI) boxes. DIs are used to get the signal directly from a guitar, bass, or keyboard rather than use a microphone.
The microphones and DIs are plugged into cords, which go straight into the mixer, or, if the mixer is more than a few feet away, you could use a “snake”. A snake is just one large cord with several (6-24 or more) mike cords inside. They have a box at the stage end, and connectors at the other end. These plug into the mixer. They are really handy.
At the mixer, the signals from the various mikes and DI’s are mixed together. Most good mixers have controls similar to “bass” and “treble” controls on a stereo. They can boost or reduce the heavy bass or the high treble sounds.
Many halls you will be mixing in are somewhat less than perfect. Hard walls reflect sound, and people and carpets soak it up. Wherever you are, the hall will “color” the sound. To counter-act the negative effects of the room, you can “equalize” (EQ) the sound coming from the speakers.
Equalizing is a fancy way of using the bass and treble controls. Some mixing boards come with equalizers built in. Even then, some really good sound techs use additional EQ units that split the audio spectrum into more than just bass and treble frequencies. That means they can compensate for many of the problems in the hall and make for a really clean sound.
A word of caution: If you don’t know how to use an equalizer, don’t experiment during a concert. Every time you change one aspect of the sound you don’t like, you are taking away from the true color of the sound. Moderation is the rule here, unless you want your talent sounding like they’re singing through a telephone. From the mixer, part of the sound goes to the main speakers for the audience, and part of it goes to smaller speakers for the musicians. These are called monitor speakers, to help them monitor the sound and to get a good feeling of what everyone else is playing.
You will find that some performers do not need monitors. But most will perform better with them. Some just can’t get along without them. Most good mixers are able to provide a separate mix for the audience and the musicians. Better ones will be able to make different mixes for each performer. The idea is to get good sound to the performers.
All in all, you might want to discuss hiring a sound engineer. You might want to discuss the fear and uncertainty performers have on each gig as to whether or not the “sound person” will really know what they are doing. Also, performers will, or should tell you, their sound needs so that you can arrange for what they might need (ask them if they don’t tell you).
If you have the money to hire someone and you are located in Juneau, we recommend Studio A, they are located in the JACC building.
At the minimum, this means making sure your performer has a full water glass on stage. (No ice water, please. It constricts the vocal cords.) From there, it’s up to you.
Some performers will have a “rider” attached to their contract. In addition to their technical requirements, there might be other “non-technical” requirements. These can range from dietary restrictions to the vintage of wine served at dinner. Most are fairly reasonable, and help the performer keep some sense of order in the crazy world of touring. Please try to honor their demands. It will make them comfortable and perform at their best.
Where will your performer(s) stay? A hotel, a local resident’s house, your place? As usual, try to arrange this in advance. If they stay at a local resident’s house, make sure they get free tickets. If they stay at a hotel, see if you can get it donated, or at a discount for mention or tickets. This is a way you can keep your costs down. You may ask the performer what they want to do after the concert. Some just want to sleep, although many enjoy an easy wind-down after the concert and are happy to relax in an informal setting rather than a sterile hotel room. These informal settings sometimes become fine pickin’ parties and help round out the evening for everyone. Let the performer(s) decide for themselves what’s best for them. You may have to get up early to take them to the airport tomorrow morning, but they may have an afternoon concert in the next town.
Serving cookies, juices, coffee and tea is not only a welcome treat for many concertgoers, but it also can bring in a few extra dollars. Many times local folks can help out baking, or you may work out a good deal with a local bakery. And it’s another chance to allow volunteers to take part in the fun, or to “work” for their ticket.
Whatever you’re serving, here are a few things you may want to be sure to remember:
Coffee: Besides the coffee, you’ll need to brew it. A multi-cup brewer can eat a lot of electricity brewing, so watch your circuit breakers! If you can, get good coffee – people will remember it. Cream, sugar and/or honey, stirrers, styrofoam or heat-resistant cups.
Tea: Some of the above, especially honey.
Juices: A good variety, and some paper cups. (Everyone’s got their recipe for great juices, but here’s an easy one from Leah Weiss: Red Zinger tea and fresh apple juice in equal parts…mmmmmm!)
All of the above: A table to serve the food & drinks from.
Some folks are able to work with local restaurants and provide a meal before the concert, tastefully prepared to match the music. (Jambalaya for Cajun music, nachos for Latin?)
When you serve anything you charge for, you’ll need a change fund. Don’t forget it!
The availability of alcohol can serve as a draw to some concerts, and in some cases, can help to make or break an event, financially speaking. It can also offset the tone of the evening. Beer and wine can be great during dances, but for most acoustic performances, the serving of the suds invites conversation, not only near the bar, but all around the hall in general. I don’t know about everyone, but when I go to a concert, I like to hear the music, and prefer to do my socializing during the break or after the concert.
To serve alcohol, you’ll need a permit. Depending upon your community, a temporary permit might need to be registered with the state’s Alcohol Beverage Control Board. At the very least, it will require paperwork, and perhaps a fee. There are a few other regulations you have to keep mind of, such as security to keep the underage and unaccompanied from entering the drinking area.
You may neglect to do all this. It is up to you, but you “takes your chances.” I’m not sure what the fines are, but for a local upstanding community organization such as your own, well……
All in all, in this author’s opinion, alcohol is a problem if you have to deal with it. If you decide to include it in your event, the easiest way out is to let someone else handle the responsibility. These days, the drunk driving laws can come back at you, and realistically speaking, a lawsuit can ruin your whole day.
My best bet: Let the professionals handle it. It may cut in on your overall take, but remember, we aren’t in it for the money, right?
Another consideration here is that the inclusion of alcohol usually means it can’t be an all-ages event.
SOME NOTES ON CONCERTS WITH MORE THAN TWO ACTS
Festival-type concerts, with seven or more acts, are great. They can highlight the best of a wide variety of music. They can also be a challenge to put together. A few observations:
Well in advance of the evening, make an order of performers. It will help everyone involved. Performers will know about when they are playing. their friends will know when they are playing. The emcee will know when they are playing. If possible, depending on the event, consider printing programs if the order is not printed on the posters.
Your sound person will need a stage crew trained in how to move microphones and microphone stands. These people are important. A badly placed microphone can make the guitar sound like a crushed ukulele.
Make stage diagrams. They will help your stage crew, your sound techs, and make the whole evening run smoother. For the Alaska Folk Festival, we use forms printed on NCR paper to make two copies of every form, one for the mixer crew, one for the stage crew.
When setting our mikes for the evening, we set them up, in order, on the stage, and check them one at a time. We also use BIG numbers (6″) on painted wood circles the diameter of a three-pound coffee can. From the soundboard, it really helps. And now that we’ve taken the time to make them look nice, we aren’t ashamed to use them.
Don’t forget that all this stuff is fairly easy. You should not be afraid to try things a little different. These are only suggestions and may be too detailed for your event. Keep it simple, please.
Don’t forget to thank all your performers after the concert.
SIMPLE SAMPLE BUDGET
Performer(s) Fees: 500 (Guaranteed)
Hall Rental: 150
Advertising (posters) 30
Tickets (200 x $8): 1600
TOTAL EXPENSES: 830
TOTAL INCOME: 1750
INCOME minus EXPENSES = PROFIT
EXPENSES minus INCOME = LOSS
$1750 minus $830 = $720
Profit split 50% with performers means the total profit for organization is $360
This is a simple budget.
Adding in extras costs like transportation, lodging, meals, newspaper/radio advertising, and decorations can be confusing. The simple answer is to keep accurate records. Keep track of details like long-distance calls and grocery store receipts. They will help you get an accurate picture of what it costs now, and for future events.
SAMPLE PRESS RELEASE
The sounds of unrestrained folk music can be heard this Friday at the Big Potato Clubhouse as THE REVERB BROTHERS perform in a benefit concert for the local food bank.
THE REVERB BROTHERS, known throughout the Northwest as some of the most contemporary practitioners of acoustic music with a powerful, full-hall sound, first drew national attention with their original blend of Cajun, rock, folk, and heavy metal. Their seven albums continue to be popular with an ever changing audience.
THE REVERB BROTHERS will be performing two shows this Friday evening, at nine and eleven, at the Big Potato Clubhouse. The Crazed Coconuts, an improvisational comedy team, will open each performance. Admission is $8 per person, and benefits the local food bank. Tickets are available in advance at The Book Eatery or at the door.
For more information, call Janosch at 568-0902.
Things usually go smoother with a check list. Here’s one that will help you remember the many small details you have to keep track of. Thanks to Lis Saya for making it up.
Lis Saya’s Handy Concert Check Lists
Concert Title ______________________________
Day _________ Date _________Time _________
Name of Group ___________________________
Name of Artist(s) ___________________________
Contact Person __________________
Contract Information (to be discussed with artist/agent)
If agent, agent’s name: __________________
Cost of Performance
Flat Fee (Guarantee) _________
Percentage _________ %
Fee Plus Percentage_________ +_________ % (net)
To be paid when? _________
Other Performance Information
Get stage diagram _________
Get sound requirements _________
Get light requirements _________
Special needs (dinner, snacks, etc.) __________________
Pre-arrange for recording of concert by local public radio station _________
Promo Material _________
CDs, tapes (from agent/record company) _________
Discography (to check for record labels) _________
Promo photographs _________
Background information _________
Interviews possible? _________ When? _________
Posters Available? _________
How many? _________ Size? _________
Date & Time of Arrival _________
Hall Rental _________
Cost of Hall _________
Set-Up/Clean-Up Fees _________
Deadline for Payment _________
Contact Person __________________
Deposit Required? _________
Size of hall _________
Maximum capacity _________
Number of chairs available _________
Pick up key or meet contact person at hall? _________
Is there a kitchen? _________
Fee for use? _________
Alcohol allowed? _________ (see alcohol)
Doors open at what time? _________
How many __________
Adult __________ Child __________ Colors? __________
Design by __________
Printing by __________
Numbering tickets? __________ * Note which numbers given to whom
Door stamp (vs. tearing tickets) __________
Outlets (Be sure to give comps to your outlets!) __________
Checks payable to ____________________
Posters (who, where, when [day, date, & time], how much, why [if it’s a benefit] __________
Pre-made by performer/agent __________
Pre-made, but needs local information __________
Locally designed & produced __________
Design by __________
Distribution Person __________
Press Release/PSA/Radio & Television __________
Mail outs to outlying areas __________
School Newspapers/Teachers __________
Live performances before event __________
Diagram of sound set up __________
Rental equipment necessary? __________
From whom? __________
Set up time __________
Set up crew ______________________________
Stage Crew ______________________________
Break-down Crew ______________________________
Basic or “special” lighting __________
Rental lights? __________
From whom __________
Who is responsible? __________
Who is responsible? __________
Table space necessary? __________
Donation bucket vs. sales crew __________
Sales Crew ______________________________
License necessary? __________
Beer permit __________
At the Concert
Ticket Takers __________
Rubber stamp and pad for stamping hands _________
Membership table __________
Here are some other thoughts from a variety of people.
From Trudy Heffernan in Fairbanks
-Most times the fee given by the agent can be used as a guide only, give
what you can afford and don’t be afraid to walk away if it gets to risky in
the negotiation stage.
-Don’t let anyone talk you into an act you don’t really want.
-re. percentage deals: Take 15% of expenses before splitting percent profit
with the artist. The agencies are used to this, it’s like overhead. And
the percentage they usually want starts at 70 and goes up. It’s weird but
it is usually either a flat guarantee or if not it leaps to 70 or 80 percent
of profit over the guarantee.
-to promote a concert in Alaska you legally need a State of Alaska Promoters
License which is special licensing and requires a $5,000 bond (which you can
have an insurance company put in for about $500 a year). If you want to
avoid the Promoter License requirement just don’t sell tickets in advance.