What song would you like performed in 2013?

Monday, August 24, 2009

Perfect weather

It just goes back to what I always.....no one wants rain on the harp! So even though the clouds looked a bit ominous on Saturday night, the wedding was great. Who would have thought we would be chilly in August. Only last week I was outside at Ball State and it was so sunny!

Great work by the staff at White River Gardens! As always, the facility looked amazing. I don't think there are any bad "flower" days there.

I am often asked "how do you get the harp to ____________" (fill in out door location). Part of it is just having doing it. With a facility like WRG, I know the staff very well. I often contact them directly the day before the event and let them know what time I will be arriving so they can help me by unlocking gates, giving me security codes, or providing additional help. That way, I don't have to bother the bride or wedding planner at the event. Plus, I am pretty resourceful. It is an unfamiliar location, I just start asking people. Eventually I find my way in. Once you start unloading a harp and rolling it around, you would be surprised at how easy the doors open!

There are still some gorgeous days this fall to come and look forward to my outdoor events, as well as the new locations I am visiting for the first time. Don't rule out harp if you are worried about the harp getting to the location. We find a way. And remember, no one wants it to rain on the harp, so it doesn't!

Have a great day!

Monday, June 29, 2009

What's been going on....

I can't believe I haven't posted in about 3 months. Yikes. Fortunately, my brides are keeping in great contact so I don't feel like I am neglecting anyone.

I wanted to talk about contemporary music requests. This has been a hot topic lately as I have received some odd requests. My standard answer is "I'll try anything once." I don't know how something will sound on the harp until I try it. It might be a disaster. Pop music is often full of orchestrations and synthesized sound that I can not duplicate, not to mention having a vocalist perform a melody on top of the instrumental tracks. However, there are some arrangements that work for solo instrument. I am happy to help you look for the right arrangement for harp (which is often for piano). Then I'll try it. If I get it close, I will ask you, the client, to judge for yourself if it has the sound for which you are looking. I might know right away if it won't work. Some things can just not be performed successfully on the harp but of course that is subjective and ultimately, it is your event.

In order to work on this new music, I would like to have it as soon as possible. It is always preferable for you to secure a legal copy for me to be sure you have the song you want. There are many songs with similar titles. This ensures I am working on the right music. I am happy to give the music back to you when I am finished. I would love 60 days to work on music, but am almost as happy with 30 days.

Lately I am working on Nickelback, Eagles and and some movie music from our great new summer features. I am willing to try and it is always in my best interest to improve my playlist so don't hesitate to ask. You never know.

Beyond that, please don't forget to respond to my email and phone questions. As the summer wedding season gets busier, I will be asking for more information from you to ensure the success of your event. Also, you can't bother me enough so please don't hesitate to contact me with your questions.

I am currently booking for 2010 and am honored to be nominated as a WRTV A List Business under wedding music. I would appreicate your support with a vote! http://wrtv.cityvoter.com/contests/best-of-theindychannel-com-a-list/4737/weddings/music

you have to enter your email address but there is a space to check so you do not receive any additional email or spam!

Many thanks!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Wedding March show on Sunday, March 1st

My own bridal show season has been slow this year. Too many other obligations in January (weddings in fact) have kept me away from the big shows I usually attend. That being said, I am so happy to be participating in the Wedding March show this Sunday in Anderson.

A few great tips:
  • comfortable shoes as you do lots of walking!
  • address labels as you fill out lots of information cards (maybe even a large one with your wedding date/time/location
  • your camera and/or notebook as you take lots of notes
  • your check book if you want to secure vendors at the show

What can you expect?
  • Some vendors will be accepting deposits at the show, others may wait until you have a longer face to face meeting with them to make sure the relationship will work for both parties. Others may wait and contact you next week to set up a meeting.
  • A future meeting for any vendor you do secure. I will not have time to plan your wedding music on the spot, so I will look forward to a meeting when we can sit down together and you can hear many samples of music. This way, the music enhances the decisions you have already made, such as flowers, dress, and even menu.
  • Show specials! It's true, vendors offer show specials. Some are for that day, some ask you to mention the bridal show and even some have a specific date before their specials expire. It never hurts to ask.
  • A lot of information coming to you quickly. Some vendors are trying to talk to more than one person at a time...with me for example, I want to be playing so you can hear me, but I know I need to speak with you to share my pricing and answer your questions, so I try to play something and talk at the same which is not always successful. I may try to talk with you and play something that another person has requsted. Please be patient and know that all vendors want to talk with you. We are excited for you and interested in your wedding plans...if you think it is too busy at that time, please come back by.
  • Information cards. Sometimes you don't want to talk to a vendor at all. You don't need the "sales pitch." You want us to email you the information next week. I am happy to do that! My table will have several clipboards ready to go for brides to complete for contact next week.
  • I have my calendar so I will be prepared to share my availability with you...and if I am booked I also have a list of my favorite harpists to share! With me, I care that you find a harpist, not just that you find me!

Mostly, I want you to have fun and get some of the planning finished. Weddings can be so stressful but Marta with HandTied Memories has really made this event special and I'm so happy to be a part of it. See you all on Sunday!

PS. Thanks to all of you that have looked me up on Facebook. I am going to honor my promise and get videos and sound files up there very soon!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Bridal Shows and what comes next

Kudos to all the brides that have been making the rounds of bridal shows. Indianapolis has a wide variety of events to help you secure all the vendors you may need, and some you didn't know existed. While I was absent from the January shows, that does not mean that I am not currently booking. I just have taken this year to focus more on marketing outside of shows. Bridal shows are very necessary and valuable. I know many of you saw and heard Jan and Jennifer. I know they are amazing and great additions to any show. It is hard to believe that we can offer so many shows in Indianapolis and fill them with such diverse vendors.

Now that the shows are over, many of you are wondering what to do now.

Hopefully at the show, you only took information from the vendors in which you were intersted. This will certainly weed out the large amount of flyers and brochures you received. From there, really decide what you want...photographer, florist, cake, location and then see if you remember what you enjoyed when you met the vendors. Was the price in your budget? Were they available? Did they offer any additional bonus for attending the show?

Once you have narrowed down your search it is time to make some calls and talk with your vendors. I know that sometimes to book your vendor of choice, you need to move quickly and might only be able to exchange and email or two with a vendor, but if at all possible, try to meet with them. Get a feel for their style, their personality. Some people are very surprised when they meet me that I don't answer the door in a flowing ball gown...I"m a little more down to earth than that. But it doesn't lessen my capability. I am a wife, mother, friend, volunteer, and harpist so while I may greet you in a pant suit, I will still give you wonderful music.

Pricing is often what makes the difference for a lot of couples. That is alright. You can still ask for references, meet the professional and ask for samples. Remember they are showing you their best work, so if that is what you like, make sure you say so. I have a current client that I met at a wedding last year and she said "Play everything the same way you played for Emma's wedding." But during our meeting, she heard something played a little differently and made sure that I knew she wanted as it had been at her friend's wedding. No problem and I'm very glad she spoke up about the music.

Lastly, remember that the planning can still be fun and memorable. Don't be afraid to ask other vendors for help in finding other vendors. I know many vendors in several fields of weddings and event planning. It is always beneficial for me to know who I will be working with the day of an event. I know their routine, their staff, and how much time they need. I know the cues that DJ's prefer and the exits of the hotels. This familiarity will allow for a great event.

Happy planning!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Bridal Season has arrived

Congratulations to all those newly engaged couples. What an exciting time for you! I am most often asked "When should I book my musician?" The answer is usually "as soon as possible." Speciality musicians, such as harpists, violinists, and small groups tend to book fairly quickly and as far out as a year. So don't wait until the last minute.

I am hoping to see many of you out at the bridal shows this year. I am always happy to speak with you so if I am performing, please wait or just get my attention. I know you have lots of questions.