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The Weekend Vote weekend vote: Do you invite people to your concerts?

March 12, 2010 at 11:03 PM

Do you invite people to your concerts?

Sometime we perfectionist violinists (and our viola, cello, bass, etc. colleagues) are a little afraid to actually invite people to our concerts. This is not helped by the following general fact: If you want to have a big audience for your concert or recital, the ideal time to start inviting tons of people is.....before you really have your stuff together! For an orchestra concert, this can mean inviting people before any actual rehearsals have begun. For a recitalist, that can mean putting up posters all over campus before that octave run in the first movement of the Wieniawski feels solid.

Sometimes it's not fear that keeps us from inviting people, it's just apathy. It's quite  possible, as an orchestra musician, to go through an entire season and never personally invite a soul to a concert. But is that the right thing to do?

Most of the time, if we are going to the trouble of giving a concert or recital, we will get our act together in time, and after all that work, we want a good audience. There's nothing like going to someone's doctoral recital and finding only 10 people in the audience.

So make up your posters, paper the town. Use every comp you get for orchestra concerts and then invite more people on top of that.

Answer truthfully below, then let's talk about how we get big audiences for our performances.

From Tiphanie Tremureau
Posted on March 12, 2010 at 11:17 PM

I voted no... although it's different when I play in an orchestra or alone. I'm usually very excited about orchestra or even chamber music concertts and I'm usually glad if people come and enjoy  it with me. But when I'm alone I'm just so scared, I usually ask people not to come to my exams or class concerts.. stupid I know! And then when It's over and went pretty well I feel like it's a pity that that or this person wasn''t there... but the idea of talking about it before even being able to play the piece quite ok in my room is not conceivable to me!!! It's not easy to find the right balance... I have to work on it!

From Anne-Marie Proulx
Posted on March 12, 2010 at 11:37 PM

Before I was scare to death to invite family. But now, I have invited them for my last concerts since I'll be having a concert break during university time and it was my last chances to play in concerts. Also, honnestly, my grand parents could not even be there when I'll finish university...  

But I can't smell family with me before the concert in the car or at the hall.  Before I don't want to see anyone except my teacher and... my mom since she made my taxi for so many years at lessons, recitals with accompagnists etc that it's not exactly as the rest of my family!  I'm however super talkative after if it went well.

I also took the habit to play for close family at home before concerts. I don't always feel like it and it gets me terribly nervous but that is what I want... see how bad I play when I'm nervous and learn a good lesson from it to not do it again on day x...  Usually it helps a lot! In my case I have to see how ridiculous it is to get nervous. Ridiculous cause nothing will eat you! You just play music and people won't enjoy it if YOU don't enjoy it yourself!  

Interesting topic,




From Mendy Smith
Posted on March 13, 2010 at 12:37 AM

I invite & advertise by posting fliers at the office, church, facebook & e-mail.   Sometimes I even do it the old fashioned way by actually talking to people :)

From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on March 13, 2010 at 1:10 AM

 Facebook makes it easier.  But I talk to people too.  Orchestra concerts are pretty easy.  I have only had one real recital in my life and I invited two people in person and they both came.  One of them brought friends.  The other people in the audience were there for the other performers, but they listened too.

From Corwin Slack
Posted on March 13, 2010 at 4:14 AM

 Since my programs are in my home if I didn't invite anyone there would be no audience.

I do play in an orchestra and I invite my family and occasionally mention it to a friend.

From Pauline Lerner
Posted on March 13, 2010 at 6:14 AM

I play in an orchestra, and I send emails to all my students and to anyone else who I think might be interested.  I occasionally talk to people about it, too.

From Alison S
Posted on March 13, 2010 at 9:30 AM

I voted no. Whenever friends ask if they can come and hear me perform I always say no out of embarrassment. Now that my local theatre has gone into administration I really need to get over this and sell some tickets.

From Jenni Bean
Posted on March 14, 2010 at 2:00 AM

I'm not pro enough for concerts yet, but It would be terrifying if I knew my friends and family were there. But it's also sad to NOT have them there.... hmm...

I wish they would secretly come without me knowing and reveal themselves after the concert if I did well. If I bombed the performance, I'd like them to go home quietly and pretend they never came. Is that too much to ask??

From Anne-Marie Proulx
Posted on March 14, 2010 at 2:47 AM

Jenni you're thinking is exactly normal. Not that long ago, I thought exactly this too!  It would be cool indeed if it worked like this ; )


From Vartkes Ehramdjian
Posted on March 14, 2010 at 2:37 AM

Since I was a kid, and when I first played in public (6) I always enjoyed the presence of people, the applause and cheers.(specially coming from people I knew)
I always invited friends , relatives, even those who did not care much neither for me nor for my music.They were the first to be invited...(maybe they would change their mind about me????)
I think every musician, young or old should be proud and priviledged and thank GOD that HE gave us the  talent to communicate through our violin , by inviting  as many people as possible specially friends and relatives to encourage us more to reflect our talent. 
Whatever that may be Wieniawsky,  Vieuxtemp, or Rovelli..............
I hope I did not get out of line here.


From PM Rolf
Posted on March 14, 2010 at 10:02 PM

OMG, Jenni, that's exactly how I feel!! I dont mind people coming to my orchestra concerts, but recitals, hell no. The pressure is too much!

From Anne-Marie Proulx
Posted on March 14, 2010 at 11:19 PM

PM Rolf, you're more afraid to pilot a violin than a 747?????????  My humble opinion is that you shouldn't since violin mistakes can't be deadly!  ; )  


Vadim Gluzman talked about something similar with violin vs surgery...



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