Frequently Asked Questions:
- What are the chances you’ll be available for our date and how far ahead should we be contacting musicians?
- How do we go about booking you?
- Can we see a copy of the contract before contacting you?
- What are your prices?
- I’m not sure how long our ceremony will last – how long should we book you for? And how much music does that cover?
- Do all instruments play for outdoor events? Are there weather conditions that would make that impossible?
- I have no idea what repertoire we’d like – where do we start?
- Will you work with our friend or family member who would like to sing or play with you at our wedding?
- Do you come to the rehearsal?
Q) What are the chances you’ll be available for our date and how far ahead should we be contacting musicians?
A) At the moment, the only way to know is to contact us. I’ve occasionally played a wedding with less than 2 weeks’ notice, but on other occasions have had to turn down a wedding when contacted a full year in advance. Most wedding couples make contact 3-6 months prior to their date. Some will book a year or more in advance. (I am in the midst of major web site revisions. One hope is that within the next year, I will have a calendar so you can check early in the process. For now, though, please do pop me an email or give a call and I’ll be happy to talk with you, or make an alternate recommendation).
Q) How do we go about booking you?
A) First, send me a message or give me a call to confirm availability and clarify and additional questions, concerns, hopes and dreams, and anything else you’d like to check on! Once you give the go ahead, and I’ve confirmed availability of all musicians involved, I’ll put together a contract with the information you give me regarding date, time, location, and ensemble desired. I will either email the contract as a PDF attachment, or send via snail mail if you prefer. You’ll then fill out and sign the contract and either return with a check for a 50% deposit or submit payment by PayPal.
Q: Can we see a copy of the contract before contacting you?
A: Absolutely! Bear in mind that I do revise the standard contract periodically. Weather stipulations are currently included in all contracts, though please be aware that some instruments are more sensitive to sun, temperature variation, moisture, etc, than others. For example, I do own a plastic flute that I have performed with in the rain while walking a half mile on gravel roads. I do like to be fully up front about weather stipulations, both in the contract and in direct communications – but please speak with me regarding details for your preferred instrument combination. For simplicity, I currently have one contract that covers all instrument combinations for all circumstances. I am also currently able to send contracts that can be signed electronically, with no need for printing or mailing. You may choose which version you prefer. Meanwhile, here are links to pdf versions of the 2016 contract for your perusal – the first is specifically for weddings and the second for other musical performance:
Q) What are your prices?
A) Prices do vary quite a bit depending primarily on the following factors: 1) number of and specific musicians involved; 2) number of hours required; 3) distance traveled; 4) whether you require special arrangements of music that’s not currently in the repertoire of the ensemble; 5) whether you require additional equipment – such as sound system or keyboard; and 6) the type of event and specific requirements.
For the moment, here’s an overview of a few options for wedding music (scroll down for other types of events) – this is NOT a firm quote and is subject to change (I am currently – spring of 2016 – re-evaluating based on insurance costs and other factors), but will give you a ballpark idea – these quotes are intended for weddings, and include consultation regarding repertoire (other event pricing may vary):
- Solo Flute in the towns of Burlington, Stowe, Waitsfield, Randolph, Morrisville, or within that circle (see map below), for up to one hour (including prelude as guests are arriving: $300 (additional $70 per hour for cocktail hour/reception; add 50 cents/mile for additional distance; locations right in Montpelier are discounted to $250)
- Turidae Flute/Viola or Flute/Violin duo within that range of distance and time: $490 (add $100 per additional hour; add 50 cents/mile for additional distance – also, flute/violin duo is likely to have an additional charge for travel, depending on your location)
- Turidae Flute/Violin/Viola Trio: $730 (add $150 per additional hour; add 50 cents/mile for additional distance)
- Turidae Flute/Viola/Harp Trio: $790 (add $150 per additional hour; add 50 cents/mile for additional distance)
- Passeri Flute/Violin/Cello Trio: $790 (add $200 per additional hour; add 50 cents/mile PLUS $12-$20 per musician per hour for additional distance)
- Flute/Voice/Piano Trio: $1,050 (a greater number of special requests is included; add $200 per additional hour; add 50 cents/mile PLUS $12 per musician per hour for additional distance)
- Other duos: probably $550-680 (higher prices would be with harp; similar additional fees for travel and added hours depending on specific musicians involved)
- Other trios: $750-1080 (higher prices would be with harp; similar additional fees for travel and added hours depending on specific musicians involved)
- Quartet: $1050-$1200 ($280 per additional hour plus $50 cents a mile and $12-20 per musician for additional distance)
- Quintet: $1250-$1500 ($350 per additional hour plus $50 cents a mile and $12-20 per musician for additional distance)
Typically, we play without a sound system, but can provide one at an additional cost of $200.
We can provide a keyboard if necessary (for indoor or well tented locations) for an additional $200.
Below are two maps. Within the circle in the map on the left, there will be no additional fee for travel. The circle on the right represents a relatively low travel fee – for most ensembles in the range of $50-90. Outside of the circle on the right, fees are quite variable depending on the specific musicians involved. Also – we do sometimes provide small discounts for indoor weddings in the greater Montpelier area.
We will be happy to travel anywhere in Vermont and most of New Hampshire for your event.
Other events than weddings may be priced differently depending on many factors. We do provide discounts for some community oriented public events and for causes that benefit the community or world. Please don’t hesitate to approach us – we have a list of factors we consider in booking performances, and we’d be happy to speak with you.
Q) I’m not sure how long our ceremony will last – how long should we book you for? And how much music does that cover?
A) One hour normally covers most wedding ceremony music – one common exception to this is that Catholic services typically take about 90 minutes, or occasionally more – you may wish to discuss this with your priest. We typically begin prelude music, to accompany the guests as they arrive, 20-30 minutes prior to the planned ceremony start time, and there is sometimes a short time after the ceremony to provide background music as guests depart. If you’d like music for cocktail hour in addition to the ceremony, 2 hours most commonly covers that. On occasion, we play for a lengthy period of time for the reception. Since our prices are lower for additional hours, this is an attractive option for some.
Q) Do all instruments play for outdoor events? Are there weather conditions that would make that impossible?
A) Some instruments are very sensitive to weather conditions, and others are less so. Most ensembles require a guarantee of protection from the elements. At this time, I own a plastic flute which will weather almost any storm – in one case I have played in the rain while leading a wedding party, minstrel style, down a half mile of gravel roads, and quite enjoyed it! Wooden instruments, however, can be damaged by weather conditions ranging from sun to extreme temperatures to any moisture. For some duos, I often provide a sun umbrella which can, in most cases, suffice for protection from sun, provided we have assurance that the wedding will move indoors if there is any rain. Trios with wooden instruments, or duos which include harp, or outdoor weddings with anything other than solo flute which will remain outdoors regardless of precipitation, temperature, and/or high wind, do require that we be provided with a well grounded tent with optional removable sides. These can be rented through tent rental companies, are sometimes provided by venues, or are sometimes purchased (or borrowed) and set up by family or friends (and kept for later use).
Q) I have no idea what repertoire we’d like – where do we start?
A) You’ll find links below to PDF files for most of the ensembles I offer. You may also wish to start with my blog entry “Suggestions for Wedding Ceremony Music”. This gives an overview with links to additional thoughts – such as whether you prefer the popular wedding choices or something a little – or a lot – different. Or sometimes it helps to meet via Skype – I can play a bit of some selections for you, and often this makes things clear fairly quickly.
Here are the lists – both full lists and “Short List” in some cases – pieces that we find work particularly well for wedding ceremonies. If you don’t see your piece on the list, it’s quite possible to add it – in some cases this might be easily workable. In others, there may be a special arranging fee of between $50 and $100 per selection.
Flute Violin Duo Repertoire or Short List Flute Violin Duo Repertoire
(note: the flute, viola, cello repertoire is almost identical to the flute, violin, cello repertoire – but I’ll be making some additions shortly)
Please note: different harpists have very different repertoire. You’ll need to access the specific list for a specific person.
Mary Fran Stafford is particularly well versed in Catholic Ceremonies, and also has a lovely soprano voice. Additions of hymns and other tunes beyond this list (below) are likely:
Vocals with Flute and Piano Repertoire (note that this trio has a wide range of options and is particularly open to your suggestions – the list given is only a starter representation of the range of possibilities)
Flute Piano Repertoire, Solo Flute Repertoire, and East Hill Winds Flute with Oboe Repertoire are coming soon in summer 2016!
Q) Will you work with our friend or family member who would like to sing or play with you at our wedding?
A) We are occasionally asked to play with vocalists and other musicians who are friends or family members. This is definitely an option, and we’ve found this quite enjoyable! There is a likelihood of additional fees for rehearsals and sometimes for special arrangements – and I’m happy to discuss the possibilities on a case by case basis.
Q) Do you come to the rehearsal?
A) In most cases, we do not come to wedding rehearsals. On some occasions, I can make it to a rehearsal if it’s a high priority for you and the scheduling works. Additional fees apply.