How do I go about booking an ensemble? Is a deposit required?
We will need some details from you including date, time, and location of the event, as well as the number of players you would like (quartet, trio, duo), and the duration of performance time. Once those details are provided, a contract will be e-mailed for you to review and sign on-line. When we have received notification that the contract is signed, an invoice will be e-mailed to enable you to pay a deposit, which is usually around 20% of your total. The balance is due 10 days before your event. See “pricing” for a full price list.
Are there any special site requirements for the musicians?
Yes. If it is an outdoor event, we need to have shade on a hot day and overhead shelter on a rainy day. Under hot conditions, with the sun beating down on the instruments, we have difficulty keeping them in tune, and they can even be damaged. We cannot play under any amount of precipitation. Again, the instruments can be damaged, and just cannot be played properly when wet.
Contact us if you are interested in the white canopy we have available to rent for $25.
Can I request a piece that is not listed on the website?
Yes. We have a large repertoire of music, but if you would like a song that’s not listed, we will do our best to find an arrangement of it. In addition, custom arrangements can be done. There is a nominal fee for these services – usually around $20 for the purchase of an arrangement and around $100 for us to do a custom arrangement.
Do I need the optional sound system for my event?
A sound system, sometimes referred to as a public address (PA) system, is not needed for each wedding. However, there are conditions which make a PA extremely beneficial. One is an outdoor wedding where there is no other sound reinforcement for the officiant. We have played numerous weddings where it is clear that very few of the guests are hearing the ceremony or the vows. For this situation, we offer a small PA with a microphone on a stand for the officiant, and one speaker, for $50. The musicians generally do not need additional amplification for a ceremony, since the guests are quiet during this time. The other scenario for which we highly recommend the PA is for a cocktail hour or dinner. The noise of the guests enjoying themselves can overwhelm the volume of the musicians. We want you and your guests to get the full enjoyment out of the music you are paying us to play, and recommend that a PA be used for any reception situation. The cost of that is $100. We are never loud. We simply spread the sound about the room so that more of the guests can hear it.
Click here for more info about sound systems.
Who is responsible for setting up and running the PA?
We handle the PA, completely. We bring speakers, speaker stands, a small mixer, and microphones, which we set up and run for your event. Not all ensembles are able to provide this service, so this is something to consider when booking your musicians.
How many musicians should I hire? Quartet? Trio? Duet?
The number of musicians is largely determined by your budget. The string quartet will give you the fullest sound, of course. But, if your budget does not allow for a quartet, we offer trios and duos. Be aware that the quartet repertoire is substantially larger than any of our other configurations. There are just more arrangements available for a quartet, especially of the more contemporary pieces. In fact, if you are hiring us for any part of your reception, it is strongly recommended that you work with a quartet, so that we may provide you with the variety of music necessary to keep your guests entertained.
Will the musicians attend my rehearsal?
Go 4 Baroque musicians have many years experience playing for weddings, and it is not necessary to have them at your rehearsal. The best way to ensure that the ceremony will go smoothly is to discuss the music selections and order of service elements ahead of time. In addition, when we arrive at the site, we will talk to the officiant or whomever you indicate (a planner or friend) that will be giving us cues as to when the procession is ready to begin.
How much before the event will the musicians arrive?
We will arrive 45 minutes prior to a wedding and begin playing about 15 minutes before the ceremony is to begin. For a non-wedding event or a reception, we will arrive 30 minutes before the start time.
What will the musicians be wearing?
In consideration of the importance of your event, the musicians will be wearing formal black attire and/or tuxedos.
Are the musicians able to accompany a vocalist for a special song? Can the musicians work with other instruments such as a trumpet?
We can work with other musicians and/or singers. However, this takes a little extra coordination, and usually, a rehearsal before the service with the vocalist. An extra fee may be required, depending on the amount of coordination it will take to give you the best result.
How do I go about selecting the music, if I don’t know much about classical music?
We can assist you with musical selections, and are happy to discuss options and make suggestions, via phone or e-mail. In our consultations, we will spend time with you to determine the best musical selections for your individual taste. We can also just play selections that we know will work well, if the client would rather not be involved in the selection process.
Is tipping the musicians customary?
Tips are always appreciated, but not necessary.