Hosting in your space is an important part of the shifting culture in the live performance industry. You are making a huge difference with every show, so way to go! Because hosting is so important, we want to share with you a few things that are critical to having a positive experience. You are likely doing this show because the performer is your jam and you think they would be awesome for your friends to come hear live. Follow these simple steps to ensure a successful house show where performer, guests, and host (you) are happy at the end of it.
Timing is critical. If you plan a show a week away, you are asking for famine. We’ve been doing this thing for a while and trust us, a week is most likely not enough time to get all your seats filled. Plus, it adds a lot of stress to your life. The last thing you want is for the person/people you are hosting to show up to 5 people. It’s demoralizing for them and, let’s face it…embarrassing for you! No one should ever end up in tears at the end of a house show, unless they are happy, moved tears. Give yourself at least three weeks to plan a house show. Four is ideal. More than that, people forget and you as a host get lazy about reminding.
Your job is to be exactly what a performer is excited about. So, don’t undercut. For an hour of performance, a performer should make a minimum of $100 and that’s the lowest of the range. Why? Because they have made a set list for your show, practiced it, packed their car, traveled to your house, set up their equipment, stayed and chatted with your friends, organized and manned their merch table, packed up, then traveled home. That’s at least 4-5 hours of prep just for YOUR show, not including the album, equipment, and merch expenses. Respect that.
Ticket prices on Lymlight are stagnant, so ticket prices don’t go up at the door or on the day of. They simply are what you plan them to be with the performer at the time you decide on the show. All ticket sales should go through Lymlight. No cash should ever be accepted at the door.
Whatever way you communicate with your friends is how you will plan to get the word out about this show you are hosting. Email is great, any kind of mass communication to people you actually think will come to your show. The reason you need four weeks to plan is because week 1 and 2 are usually a mass email/FB event, etc. Week 3 and 4 are mass emails again, but additionally are personalized invites via text, phone call, messaging, to see if they got your previous mass invite and if they are going to make it. These last two weeks of individual reaching out is really important. It’s usually when most people will buy a ticket via the link you shared. It may sound like a lot of work, but it only feels like that the first time when you are getting your groove….like learning the tango.
Eventually Lymlight will automate this, but until then, your passion is driving the change!
These essentials will ensure that you and performer and guest walk away from your night confident you could do this thing again!