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5 HOT TIPS

18 June 2021 |
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Our top 5 ‘hot’ tips for your outdoor party!

Now that spring has finally sprung (although it was a pretty lovely mild winter!) and we are that much closer to a beautiful summer season, we decided to compile our top 5 ideas for you to think about when choosing live music as part of your entertainment. Whether it be a gorgeous garden wedding ceremony, or a private dinner event under the stars, live string music can be so effective at creating a unique, joyful and sophisticated ambience while you wine and dine.

Having a vision of what you’re after is great! But don’t fret if you aren’t sure where to start. We are here to help and are more than happy to look after all enquiries – no question is too silly or wild!


1.   LOCATION

Finding the best spot for your musicians to perform.

Particularly relevant for wedding ceremonies but can also be applied to any outdoor event.

When deciding the location of your wedding aisle, and the seating for your guests, also have a little think about where you’d like the musicians to be playing. Off to the side? Behind the archway? At the beginning of the aisle? Visualise what would suit you in terms of both aesthetic and practicality. We don’t want to be in the way of the photographers, or you, of course!

If you’ve booked a string quartet, we do require more space around us to play than say, a duo or solo instrumentalist. We should be positioned close enough to the congregation so that we can hear the celebrant and play at the appropriate time, or if we are accompanying hymns during the service, we can hear everyone’s beautiful singing voices!

Assigning someone on the day to liaise with us and let us know where we are to be positioned will help ease your mind, as well as allow us to set up efficiently. This could either be the celebrant or a friend or family member who will be at the venue early. 

If a spot for us hasn’t been decided in advance, never fear! We are very familiar with the running and layout of a wedding ceremony so you can trust us to make an appropriate judgement on the day.

2.   SPACE 

Fill the space with beautiful ambience.

If your event is held within a large space/garden/paddock etc, think about how many musicians you could have. If you really want to go all out – we can discuss booking a string orchestra! We can also be mic’d to a PA system to really blast out our beautiful music. If this is your preference, the sound engineer at the venue will have to be notified as we don’t provide our own amplification. In most cases, a non-amplified string quartet provides sufficient volume.

On the flip-side, if your event is in a smaller location and space is of the essence, think about perhaps having fewer musicians. If you are looking for a softer, more intimate vibe, this could be the way to go. 

3.   COVER

Protect the musicians.

We all know what Wellington weather can be like – and it’s no joke when they say it’s a city of four seasons in one day! That being said, to ensure that we can play to our full capabilities, we need to be well away from any foul weather that might swoop in on the day. 

A lovely sunny warm day is definitely preferable, but we do need protection from this as well. Our instruments are super fragile to heat and can warp when direct sunlight hits them. Not to mention, it’s very hard to read our music whilst squinting. 

Protection such as a marquee, a large reinforced umbrella or a veranda with a large overhang usually works well.

4.   TIME

Booking the right amount of time for your event.

You’ve planned your party and now it’s time to add the entertainment! There are many areas of your event where live music would work well: as your guests arrive, throughout the event as background ambience, or a short feature performance or concert where the musicians are the centre of attention! 

We require a firm start and end time upon booking so we can ensure that our musicians will be available for the whole duration. In deciding the booking length, you’ll want to factor in any speeches (we will stop playing during these) and also our breaks that we will take (10 minutes every hour) as you’re paying for our time as well as our performance. It’s always a nice idea to include around 15-20 minutes of music before your official start time, particularly at a wedding, so that guests are immediately greeted to a lovely atmosphere.

For wedding ceremonies, we suggest booking 1.25 hours which includes both pre-ceremony and departure music. We have discussed this further on our website page: vividstrings.com/weddings 

Of course, factors out of your control can arise and you may require us to play overtime. If this is the case, and we are available and have agreed to stay on, we will continue providing awesome music for your event. There will be an overtime fee and this is calculated at $30NZD every 15 minutes per musician. 

We have laid out all our pricing in our Event Guide. To get a copy of this guide (which also includes info on our groups and T&Cs) send us an enquiry through our website or write to us at hello@vividstring.com. If you are unsure how long you’d like to book us, we can discuss this further with you!

5.   MUSIC CHOICE

Selecting appropriate music for the setting.

What’s the clientele of your party? Friends and family? Colleagues or even acquaintances? 

Last but not least, our final tip is choosing the music. It seems pretty obvious, but getting the right vibe going at your event is crucial. We have loads of choice ranging from Classical, Jazz and Tango right through to ‘Golden Oldies’, ‘Naughty Nineties’ and today’s hits. If you’re unsure what genre/s would be appropriate at your event, our skilled musicians will read the room for you! 

For many events, starting with Classical music and moving into upbeat Pop works really well. We can also take requests (preferably in advance) of both songs you’d love to hear, and ones you’d like us to avoid…

You can find our complete list through this link: vividstrings.com/music-list  as well as recommendations for your wedding ceremony. Give our audio tracks a listen and keep an eye out for videos to be coming in November! vividstrings.com/listen-to-us

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