How many times have you gone to a pub and thought I only want to hear the band. Or maybe you’d like to hear the band play songs that normally don’t make it to their pub set lists. You could have some control over that by hosting your very own house concert.
By definition a house concert is a performance that is presented in a home or apartment, or at a nearby small private space such as a barn, church hall, on a deck, at a community centre, basically anyplace your guests can gather. Early minstrels would perform for coins and favours in public squares while more ‘serious’ musicians would take their performances to the chambers of the upper classes and nobility giving us the term Chamber Music. As public access to music grew, both with the advent of large concert halls and accessibility of recorded music, fewer musicians were performing in the smaller intimate settings.
Over the past decade artists have been returning to their musical roots and many of us have taken advantage of the private concert. Venues such as Owls Head Road and Seawind Landing in Nova Scotia, Homeport Homestages and Landsdowne Concert series in New Brunswick, and many others, offer the opportunity for artist, hosts and guests to meet and share the occasion in an informal and intimate setting.
So why would you want to host a concert? Well there’s the allure of having a live group playing an intimate and personal concert for you and your guests, there’s the support you are giving the visiting musicians, and frankly they’re just plain fun!
If you’re thinking about hosting a house concert some of the things to consider include how many people can you comfortably seat, will it be an ‘invitation only’ or public event, what to charge for admission, marketing, sound system, refreshments, should I hold a potluck, whether to have one show or present a series, and the choice of musicians. We have performed at successful house concerts in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia over the past three years and they are becoming one of our favourite types of performances.
If I’ve piqued your interest Saltscapes magazine has a great article on hosting house concerts for further reading.
If you’re interested in inviting SWIG into your home please reach out to us. We’d love to be your guests!
Iechyd da tan y tro nesaf! (Good health until next time)
We started 2018 where we finished 2017, at the Oaken Barrel Pub in Greenwood. It was the first time I’d ever been there when Jennifer or Dean were not there! They were off to New Brunswick to collect their new fur baby! They’ve promised when we return in February, River will drop by for some puppy snuggles. Thanks to Hayley for stepping up and making us feel like a part of the Oaken Barrel family.