What is a house concert?
A house concert is exactly what the name says, a concert in someone’s house. It doesn’t have to specifically be in a house, it could be a backyard or even a community center or art gallery space. It is a concert outside of a traditional music venue.
Key elements about hosting a house concert:
•A good host is going to be someone who is a fan of our music, who wants to help spread the word.
•Host has choice of charging for tickets and paying us a flat fee -or- having it be a donations-only event.
•It does not require a large fancy home or complex event planning; just a willingness to support live music by providing both a location and inviting people to attend.
•It does not cost much (or anything) to put on. Some hosts provide snacks. If alcohol is permitted, it is typically BYOB.
How it works
The host opens their home to us as a performance venue, and possibly a place to spend the night if we are traveling.
The host and friends promote the show by inviting family, friends, and others passionate about music.
The more the merrier, but the host should be able to guarantee at least 20 guests for the concert to be a great experience for everyone.
The artist will perform for however long/short agreed upon, but typically at least an hour, sometimes two. Shorter sets with a small break for mingling and merchandise.
At the break, the artist might talk with attendees about his or her music and be able to sell CDs, t-shirts, or other merchandise.
The host will announce band's set(s), and, if applicable, ask attendees for a donation for the artist.
Benefits of donations-based house concert:
It is simpler. Donations ensure the “house show” is not viewed as a business. This protects the host because charging a ticket price could run you afoul of commerce laws. The likelihood is low, but still, we prefer to play it safe.
For the artist, getting our music in front of an audience of listeners might be more important than the ticket revenue. Typically, the donation system works well. The host can collect donations by reservation prior to the event, or directly after the host includes wording on the invite to “expect to bring a donation”, and announces after the show something like, “Thanks for coming tonight! I hope you enjoyed this as much as I did. I want to remind you this is a donation based concert. Your donations will directly benefit our artist and will show her our appreciation for this amazing experience she brought us. I encourage you to give generously. ”
Benefits of paying us a flat fee to perform:
If we are beyond a certain distance from you, a donations-based show could possibly be too risky a venture for us, sad to say. An agreed-upon guarantee covers our time and expenses. We are based in Waterford, MI, so mileage will definitely be a factor.
Enough space to provide each performer with about five 5 feet wide by 10 feet deep is a rough estimate for the amount of room we'll need to set up. (Of course our "squeezing-it-all-in" skills have been known to be pretty impressive! lol)
Electricity for amplification needed.
Space for people to sit in one main area. A small living room can pretty easily house 20 people. Couches, cushions, floors or folding chairs are all perfectly fine.
If you want to support live music and the arts, house concerts are an excellent way to do it. They provide both established and new performers a way to be heard and can help support an artist’s career in music.