Do you offer in home consultations for brides?

  • Member
    robin roys on #145646

    I haven’t done in home consultations for brides in YEARS mainly because no one has asked me to because of my demo cd and sound bites on my website.

    I can understand the bride wanting to see and hear the harp BUT, is it a waste of time?

    This bride wants my flutist there, as well.

    Advice?????
    I’m not feeling enthusiastic about this.

    Member
    Sylvia Clark on #145647

    Yes.

    Member
    jennifer-buehler on #145648

    I do this if they’ve booked because it’s easier to talk them through the ceremony and get the ins and outs of what they want when talking to them in person.

    Member
    robin roys on #145649

    I agree totally, if they’ve booked me.

    I’m currently being asked to “audition” with my flutist for a wedding. Guess it boils down to how much I want the job.

    Participant
    galen-reed on #145650

    1) I’ve referred them to slip in the back of another wedding/function we’re playing for – enough to get a feel for the music/performance capability of the players, and assuming the function is open to the public (or that one can discreetly be off to the side.

    2) I’ve allowed them to come to rehearsal. Found out the hard way it’s best to say “for the last 20 minus” (or whatever), or they take much more group time than I ever intended.

    These let them hear the performer(s) live and get a sense of decorum, etc., but without impinging on performer time in any significant way.

    Member
    Sylvia Clark on #145651

    I didn’t offer advice because I have no web site, and I “audition” for almost every wedding I play.

    Participant
    onita-sanders on #145652

    Absolutely not.

    Member
    robin roys on #145653

    I completely agree. How do you nicely tell the bride this information?

    I’ve thought of saying I charge $100 an hour for in home consulting, but am happy to communicate on the phone or email for no additional charge. : )

    Some of the wedding planners I’ve run in to lately monopolize my time and try to micro manage every minute of my performance. It’s really frustrating.

    Participant
    onita-sanders on #145654

    When I get the first inquiries for my services.

    Participant
    David Ice on #145655

    I have always offered consultations.

    Member
    robin roys on #145656

    Good ideas. I used to do this all the time, years ago, but got kind of spoiled with the brides that hired me on line!

    The wedding planners are becoming an issue lately. I think your “bobby pin” comment is perfect! I’ll have to remember that one.

    I hate it when they tell me something different then the bride told me the week before. I am hired by the BRIDE, not the planner and take my instructions from her, but on the wedding day, I suppose the planner is her “voice.”

    Some of these planners are nervous wrecks and drive me crazy!
    Guess I’m getting old!

    Thanks.
    Robin

    Participant
    David Ice on #145657

    I’m curious, Robin…..I haven’t ever had any micromanaging wedding planners. What are they demanding? I’ve had a few contact me, but it’s always been the usual “just wanted to touch base and confirm that you will be arriving about 3:30PM on the 17th…” sort of thing. Sometimes they’ll confirm a processional, etc. or ask for a spelling on a composer, etc. But I haven’t had the planner from Hell. Some of them will email me a schedule (which is fine) and that usually has laid out my arrival time and the listings of the pieces the bride and I settled on for the ceremony music…but that’s been it.

    BTW (knock on wood) I’ve never had one of those “endless phone call” brides who bug you at least weekly about the music. It might be due to the consultations…when you can meet eye-to-eye you can put them at ease and they realize that you have THEIR wedding as your sole focus.

    Member
    robin roys on #145658

    Consider yourself lucky if you’ve not had the wedding planner from hell. Many of them are nice and will just “call to touch base” and get the ceremony started on time, etc. and are great.

    However, the last 2 wedding planners I encountered were “nervous nells.”

    I suspect in this economy, brides are hiring “newbies” because an experienced planner wouldn’t want to waste a lot of time micromanaging a professional.

    The planners called me at least 5-7x, mostly the week of the wedding, badgering me to go to the rehearsal, (which I did not) demanding a recording of the ENTIRE WEDDING MUSIC so they could rehearse to it, since I wouldn’t rehearse, telling me I had to arrive 2 hours early because she wanted EVERYTHING in place 90 minutes prior to the ceremony, trying to change the location of the harp to some far off place, because it might “block” someone’s view of the wedding party or mess up the photographs, etc…

    I’ve even had one planner that wanted to attend my “home rehearsal” to verify the music was prepared, since I wouldn’t attend the actual wedding rehearsal!!!

    It’s hard when they are in your face at the ceremony, telling you to move your harp some place else, and the bride is no where around.

    I take pride in my professionalism, dress well, arrive early and am well prepared. An overzealous wedding planner drives me nuts!!!!

    R

    Participant
    harp guy on #145659

    I stopped playing weddings a couple of years ago because I got sick and tired of wedding planners. The last wedding I played I was at the rehearsal and literally the Father of the Bride, Minister, and Planner were in a big argument at the altar. I had spoken with the bride right before the rehearsal and she confirmed my play list earlier.

    I walked over there and amidst the yelling I had to simply shut down the ‘my horse is bigger than yours’ contest. I just said that I was hired by the Bride and I’ve had a list of repertoire for over a month. I’m ultimately the person who keeps the show going until the officiant takes over and I can handle most problems very smoothly. This is how it’s going to go or I pack up, return your money, and leave.

    That settled that.

    As for auditions for gigs, I don’t do it unless it’s for symphony work. I make my living as a musician and if providing my resume, demo CD, and network contacts aren’t good enough, then I’m not interested. The only exceptions to that are if I’m arranging something special I’ll send recordings ahead of time or will make last minute changes in rehearsal. I know it seems harsh this way, but if I ran around auditioning for every little gig I would eat up all of my income in gas/transportation or I would sacrifice students lessons.

    Member
    Sylvia Clark on #145660

    Doing in-home consults (if you want to think of them as auditions) means THEY do the driving and pay for gas.

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