I wanted to start this blog a long time ago in order to share Art-Strings Ensembles' almost 20 years of experience in performing at the wedding ceremonies, private parties and corporate events.
I do feel that it is so overdue…Yet, I still believe that this information is worthwhile reading, even in 2017 - for our possible clients in the future and also, just for people that want to learn more about the wedding music industry, its modern trends, different ensemble options and hidden caveats while booking musicians on the web. And most importantly – to provide an “insider” tip/advice about some simple steps that may help potential clients save their hard earned money when booking live music for their event.
When shopping for a great ensemble that will fit your budget and your music interests, the very first thing to do is to ask yourself the following question: “What type of music/style do I want to have on my special day?”
It can be the old good standards from classical repertoire, which will add class and elegance to your event within a traditional flavor.
My experience as a professional musician and director of Art-Strings – this always works just fine, as this traditional style was time tested by centuries in every corner of our planet.
Another trend, which became more and more popular in recent years – is the so called “Modern Ceremony” that uses mostly contemporary popular music/song titles.
This road is full of new and exciting opportunities - in terms of selecting new song titles or picking a song that is really specific to you etc.)
But this approach can become really bumpy, depending on several factors – venue acoustics, indoor/outdoor ceremony logistics and most importantly – how a particular title will sound performed within the context of a specific ensemble option (string quartet, string trio, piano trio, wind ensemble etc. – the list is too long to write it here…
There is also another choice – to mix & match old styles with modern music (please always do this carefully and consult with your music provider first!)
In any case, I would recommend to begin with just one or two selections most important (to you and your loved one) and then - only then to discuss these with your prospective music vendor and listen to his/her opinion/recommendations about your music selections and what ensemble to use.
The essence of this method is to avoid any of your favorite songs/music titles to be performed poorly by the wrong ensemble combination - as some titles will sound great by a string quartet and fairly mediocre (if not poor) by a piano trio, and vice versa.
Now, about the costs of booking live music for your event.
I general, the more performers in the ensemble, the better deal you get (per performer price) but of course, a string quartet will cost you more in total than a Violin/Piano or Violin/Cello duo. Tempted to save some money booking a soloist or a duo vs string quartet or a trio? I know the feeling, me too! But remember -you almost always get what you pay for – this rule is true even in such a “hard to evaluate talent/sound quality ” field.
The harp is usually the most expensive on the block (up to 2.5 times as much relative to the booking costs of a violin, viola and cello) – you will have to pay for transportation and extra set-up time.
Also, the earlier you book, the better price you will usually get (similar to booking your airline reservation)
TO BE CONTINUED ...