Referring students for paid gigs

Posted In: Teaching the Harp

  • Participant
    Elizabeth Webb on #189482

    Fellow teachers: What do you look for in a student to decide they are ready to start playing gigs? I realize each situation will be a little different, but is there a certain point where you start referring the student for professional gigs you cannot take, or encourage the student to start pursuing paid performance opportunities? Obviously I want my students to get as much performance experience as possible, and students of all levels can participate in things like playing in nursing homes. But when you refer someone for a paid gig, that person’s performance (on the harp and overall conduct) reflects on you.

    Gretchen Cover on #189487

    Elizabeth, I am not a teacher, but I strongly suggest if you want students to get performance experience that you affiliate yourself with a local church. Your students could play solo, ensemble and with other instrumentalists. It is a way to give the younger and/or not so-advanced students a platform to perform. If you have a good worship arts church where you live, you may want to discuss this possibility with the music director.

    Emily Granger on #189495

    Great advice, Gretchen! Why not accompany your student to a free gig. Have them play for their parent’s business holiday party or a cousin’s wedding. Also request your student come with you to one of your paid gigs. This way they see what is expected of them before they go out there on their own.

    Victoria on #189501

    My friend sometimes take her students whose level she thinks is sufficient, to some of her gigs and plays duet with them. That way her students can experience what it’s like before going out on their own. Whether or not she shares her pay with said student, I’m not sure. Perhaps it can also be counted as a lesson/experience for the student?

    That way whenever she can’t make it to a gig, she has some students who are ready to go in her stead. She is not a harpist, but I imagine it can be applied to us.

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