Timing, and how it affects pricing seems to cause the most confusion among our clients. In this post, I’ll try to clarify.
OK, we’ve loaded in, we have set all our equipment up, and we’ve finished our sound check. What now? I want to know two separate pieces of information to understand the amount of time required of us. One is the Event Window, and the other is the Performance Length.
The Event Window is the amount of time we need to remain fully set up and looking sharp after we have completed our setup, and usually consists of a combination of Downtime and Performance Length. Generally, the Event Window begins when the guests are allowed to enter into the room in which our pianos are set, and it ends when we are able to begin our teardown. For many events, the Event Window starts at the “Published Invite Time” which is the time that the guests are told the event begins. For some events, there may be a cocktail hour in a completely separate space from where our pianos are set. In that case the Event Window probably doesn’t begin until the cocktail hour is finished and the doors are open into the dinner space, or the show space. (This is why we ask if the event will take place in one space or multiple space, and ask that you describe the movement between spaces.)
The Performance Length is the amount of time we are sitting onstage engaging in a live performance. Because our show is generally a headline show, there is often Downtime before the start of the performance while people eat dinner or have cocktails. Downtime is the time we remain fully set and in place but are not providing any music. Because our show is highly interactive, we generally suggest not having us begin our performance until dinner is over. Many times our clients have speeches and awards. Since we are generally not performing during dinner and speeches, that time would be considered Downtime.
In rare occasions, our clients may hire a separate DJ to play after our show is complete. If we are not able to tear down until after the DJ is done, that would also be considered Downtime.
Even though we are not performing during our Downtime, it does add to the length of our day. This is why we charge less for a 4 hour Event Window with a 2 hour performance than we would charge for a 5 hour Event Window with the same 2 hour performance length.
Please note that the time we need to load in and setup (about 2 hours) and the time we need to tear down and load out after your event (about 1 hour) is already included in the base price. There are no additional charges for setup and teardown, and this time it takes us to do these tasks should not be considered downtime nor part of your event window.