Music forms an essential element of all kinds of events not just gigs. Bands and solo musicians are often brought in to play at conferences and exhibitions.
But choose your musicians and venue carefully – the potential pitfalls are tremendous.
Check out the musicians carefully. Take time to listen to their music and find out what other people think of them. You might like them – but other people may not. Find out whether they are reliable, turning up on time ready to play. Seek references from other conference or event organisers.
Check out the venue first. Make sure that the acoustics are suitable and that there are no problems in providing live music. Not all venues have the necessary licenses. Talk to your AV equipment company to ensure they are aware that live music will be played because this can involve extra sound checks and equipment. Consideration should also be given to the decibel levels and so that the event does not contravene any noise regulations.
Is there enough space in the room for the musicians to leave their instruments safely in place throughout the event? Or will the instruments have to be removed at some point? This can affect the running time. If you have several different musicians playing throughout the event, it can be even more complex as each will require individual sound checks, equipment layouts and ensuring that sound and light desks can cope with different requirements.
The venue has to be big enough to accommodate everyone – musicians, AV and event staff as well the audience. Bear in mind that if you are selling tickets on the day, you may find that demand is greater than anticipated.
Additional set up time has to be allowed when including music in an event. The musicians need time to practise in the venue beforehand. Sound checks have to be made, and the AV technicians have to make sure that everything is working properly. This can add several hours to the event preparation.
Consider your audience when choosing musicians. It is no use hiring a rock group if most of the people attending your prefer classical music! The music should also fit or in some way reflect the style of the product being promoted, or the event being held.