Oooh, sounds like my type of gig!….however, I still have yet to do one, trying to build my repetoire and steady my nerves a bit more….but, I was wondering Kay, did anyone talk to you while you were in the midst of playing and, if so, how did that go (i.e. were you still able to play and talk at the same time?)….just curious…
I’ve found people are often completely unaware of how distracting it is to carry on a conversation while I’m playing. Once I played in a violin/piano background duo, for a large afternoon tea. There were so many old ladies gabbling that we musicians
Personally, I prefer the type of gig where I’m doing background music as opposed to where everyone is dead silent, staring at me and listening…I don’t get nervous doing background music, and can improvise more, do more repeats in pieces I like, play around with switching octaves, etc., and I worry less about people noticing wrong notes…I guess that’s why I don’t get nervous that way.
Our ensemble occasionally gets asked to do background music. We call
these gigs “paid rehearsals”, because they are almost stress free for
the newer folks and yet get them used to the idea of playing in public.
Of course, no one is forced to participate and there are some who
choose only to play at home and for our own concerts, which I think are
more stressful, because then folks are focused on us and pretty silent.