All About House Concerts
Hi! We are thrilled that you are considering booking a House Concert with Hobbyhorse!
Hobbyhorse will play an hour long, donation-based, concert held in your living room, back yard, porch or other space.
Have 10 or more of your friends over and we will be delighted to bring our music to you!
Why are House Concerts so cool and why should you host one?
- You get to experience an intimate live concert without having to drive anywhere.
- Create some community! You can have a reason to invite over the friends, neighbors and family that you don’t see often enough and give them a unique experience that they will always remember. Music brings people together!
- House Concerts are free for the host and donation-based for your guests so there is no financial risk involved for anyone.
- You can be part of the grassroots House Concert movement that is gaining popularity around the world that is beneficial and fun for both audiences and musicians.
Here’s the breakdown on what to expect from a Hobbyhorse House Concert, what kind of show we will do and what you will need to know as a house concert host. We will help you and hold your hand the whole way.
#1 The Show
What can you expect from a Hobbyhorse show? You can expect an enchanting mix of original songs and creatively arranged Celtic and British folk songs. You can expect world class acoustic guitar playing and beautiful vocals and harmonies. You can expect an entertaining show with lots of exciting musical moments and surprises.
#2 The House
The ‘house’ can be a large house, small house, yard, porch, condo, apartment, studio or any place you have access to where your friends can gather, sit and enjoy an hour long concert. Pre and post concert mingling can of course spill into other areas and rooms, but we ask that at concert time everyone is gathered close and seated together in front of the band as we perform.
#3 The Guests
To create the best possible scenario for a successful show, we ask that you invite your friends, neighbors, colleagues and anyone else in your social circle that you feel will enjoy an intimate concert in your home. Invite a lot of people, because not everyone will be able to come.
The number of guests that you invite is only limited to the room that you want to use. If you are confident that you can get at least 10 or more adults to the concert, we can make it happen.We will make it super easy for you and give you all the details you need to tell your guests including sample write ups to use in your emails and even help with the RSVPs.
When we play a House Concert we leave the level of donation open for each individual guest to decide. As the host, we ask you to announce the call for donations at the end of the show. (We will give you a cheat sheet). You might wonder why we offer our music for donation. Most of your friends have probably not heard us play before, so we like to encourage people to come to the show at no risk. It also leaves the option open for guests to donate an amount that they are inspired to donate and is appropriate for their income level. The concert is of course free for the host and co-host. (If you would rather treat your friends to the concert instead of having a donation-based concert, we will happily play for a set guarantee in proportion to the number of guests attending.)
If this sounds like something you would like to do either soon or in the future, please fill out the form below and we will get back to you to help you plan a great house concert!
Questions you might have:
House Concert FAQs
Details and Concerns you might have
What is the difference between a house concert and a party? A House Concert is an event where the concert is the focus and we play for donations. If you are interested in having Hobbyhorse perform at a birthday party, benefit, or any other social gathering where Hobbyhorse is providing music, but not the focus of the evening we will be happy to discuss our fees.
What should I do about Chairs? If you are concerned that you don’t have enough chairs, you can ask guests to bring their own or opt in to sit on the floor. You might have a friend who has a bunch of chairs they can bring over or you could rent some from a party rental business. It is important that everyone is comfortable.
What should I do about Food & Drink? Food and drink is optional. You can decide to make or buy food and drink to share with guests, ask guests to bring food or drink to share or decide not to have food and drink at all.
What do I say in the invitation? We will provide you with all of the details. We can even give you an email template to use.
Do I have to count the RSVPs? We have created a handy google form that helps collect RSVPs so we can both keep track. You might also want to create an event on facebook with RSVPs. It’s important to know how many people intend to show up though we know things can change last minute.
How long will you play? We will play for approximately one hour with a one song encore tacked on if demanded. We want you to be able to accurately tell your guests how long the concert will be. The show is not about playing as many songs as we want but about giving you and your friends a great experience!
Will the neighbors mind? We highly suggest telling, or even better, inviting the neighbors. What is more fun than being able to walk down the street and go to a live show at your neighbor’s home?
Will you be selling CDs and stuff? Yes we will. CDs and other merchandise will be there for guests to buy if they feel inspired to take something home with them. We accept both credit cards and cash for merchandise.
I am already an experienced House Concert host and we have a certain way of doing things. Can we do your concert our way? Let’s talk. It is probably fine with us especially if you have regular guests that expect things to be a certain way.
What to expect day of the show:
So you’ve invited everyone, the RSVPs are in and the day of the concert has arrived. Here is what to expect:
We will arrive one hour before guests are scheduled to start arriving in order to set up our equipment and do a soundcheck.
Guests will be invited to arrive at the time that we all have decided together. As guests arrive, we all hang out and mingle for about 40 minutes
About 20 minutes before the show, we will go in a room or space that you designate and will warm up before the show.
An hour into the pre-concert hang out everyone gathers in the performance space, people find their seats, the host (that’s you) gives a brief introduction and then we perform for an hour.
As soon as we’ve finished the last note of the concert, you get up front next to us with the donation vessel to make the donation announcement. It should sound something like this:
Thank you all for coming tonight. I hope you enjoyed this as much as I did. I want to remind you that this is a donation-based concert. Your donations tonight will all directly benefit Annie and Phil, and will show them our appreciation for this wonderful experience they brought us tonight. I’m going to leave this vessel right here and encourage you to give generously.
After that we all hang out some more and give the guests a chance to buy merchandise if they want. If you or a co-host can help out with the merchandise, all the better.
A Note about the Donations:
It’s really important to us that we’re able to make it so these concerts are possible for anyone to host and the way we do that is by doing the shows on a donation basis. But since the donations are how we earn our living, it’s obviously super important that we have our host’s full enthusiasm behind this aspect of the event.
Annie is really good at coaching hosts on their donation speech, and she will make a point of going over this with you as we’re getting set up on the day of the concert. We’ll even give you a little cheat sheet of things to remember to say in case you forget or get nervous in the moment. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but please do show your enthusiasm at the end of the show. Your enthusiasm will help encourage donations.