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Author Topic: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.  (Read 1999 times)

James Turner

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I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.

I've done a number of gigs and tours for a local christian organisation. They have just asked me to quote for an advent gig at the end of the year, This sounds like it will be a five venue national tour playing to venues of about 2,000 capacity. They would like a quote for everything, gear (including off topics) , crew, transportation, accommodation etc. BUT they don't know where they are going yet.

They also don't know exactly what the program for each of the events will be, (and on past experience will not know until the curtain goes up.) It sounds like they want a brass band and rock band plus loads of lavalieres plus whatever else they think up.

They did say they would like it to be loud and impressive though.

Now my problem is I have never provided for gigs larger than about 500 people. I would very much like to say yes to this gig because I know the organisation, and I am a bit concerned that if I can't do this I might loose some potential future work from them.

As far as I see it at the moment I have a number of options,

I could say yes, and scrape through by expanding my existing rig and it all works,
I could say yes, and have everything come down about my ears as my rig doesn't do what they want it to do. I loose all future face with this organisation.
I could say yes, and dry hire what I need to do this gig, loosing any margin, but I keep them as a future client.
I could say no.

What do you think I should do? should I accept and use this to build for the future?

Thanks in advance,

James
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Evan Kirkendall

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Re: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2005, 05:08:58 pm »

What gear are you running?

Ive managed to push my little system (built for 300) all the way to 500 people, but a 1500 person jump is pretty large. You will need a pretty good amount of power to do 2k people. I'd try and rent/borrow some gear just so you can do the gig and make the people happy. Its better to turn down the gig and recommend them to someone else if you know you cant do it. You dont want to ruin your gear and rep. trying to do something out of your league... I almost learned that the hard way...
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James Turner

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Re: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2005, 05:24:45 pm »

I'm using

FOH Production Services LS2 fed by Thomann TA amplifiers. with DN360 and DCX2496, Soundcraft Spirit LX7 (24ch) Outboard includes, SPX990+ REV5 effects, DS201 gates and MPX4400 compressors.  

Monitors are SX300, with Thomann TA2400 amps and DN360 Monitor desk is Spirit 24.

Mics include SM58, SM57, B57, D190, D112, e604, MD421, ck91+se3000

If I did this I would be using three stacks of LS2 and 6 mixes of two SX300. That would give 6 1.2K dual 18 subs, 6 600w dual 15 bass 6 400W mid and 6 2" hf boxes (each driver getting 2xRMS)

I would be looking to hire a bigger desk if needed. probably a 48ch 8bus desk of some description.

Thanks for your good advice.

James
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2005, 06:16:16 pm »

Greetings, James-

There is another option... sub-hire a production company that is properly equipped and knows how to do these things.  As you have the client knowledge and good will established, that is what you should be paid for.  Make youself "technical director" or some such and decide what your fee will be.  If you are arranging for gear, crew, and talent transport, hiring a lighting designer and provider, that *is* in fact what you are doing.

You have a full plate already.  You don't need the extra worry about your gear or your abilities, and it's far too important for your reputation to risk it badly done.

It is more important to them that their shows go well than who's gear is used.  If they are happy with what you accomplish on their behalf they will have you back again.  Once you've seen how the audio end of this tour is done, you may want to invest your own money toward those abilities, or perhaps you'll find that you can do better buying lights or leasing motor coaches.  Or you might decide that investing in the military industrial complex brings a better return... and you can simply go out as Production Manager and own nothing more than your briefcase and cell phone.

Based on my work with similar organsations here in the US, my gut feeling is that if you turn down this gig, you will see your future work with them quickly diminish.  No pressure on you, James... Wink

Tim Mc
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Kevin Ballard

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Re: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2005, 08:55:38 am »

James,

the best advice you've been given is to sub it out to bigger suppliers for the aspects you can't cover (like most of it). Try doing the off topics by supplementing your own and have a provider do the sound. In your written quote detail the things like 20 Orchestra Mics and 5 radio Lavs or whatever with the price so they can see these things cost money (else they think sound is sound). Detail the higher labour content and specify what you are providing (in blocks not a gear list) so say 6 monitor mixes, 96db at FOH and even coverage. So they see you are professional and providing what is needed. Don't give a gear list because they might use it to shop and cherry pick against you. If what you (and your contractors)quote is too expensive, let them go elsewhere for a cheaper less capable quote and fall flat. They will likely be back.





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Dan Timon

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Re: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2005, 10:28:36 am »

To provide context to what others have said:

From what you have described, it sounds like you have performed very well in meeting the needs of this group in the past, and they may now think of you both as an expert and as a trusted "friend in the business" who they can depend on to manage all of the unknowns that present themselves in their upcoming tour. They do not have the skills to pull this thing off, but because of your success with them in the past, they feel you do have all the necessary skills. Congratulations-that is quite a compliment!

So now you need to act with confidence, and work on their behalf as the Technical Director or Event Director for this project. When you consider yourself a paid partner to them, it makes sense to charge them for your expertise, contacts, project managing ability and everything else it takes to deliver the tour to them. Your demeaner should say, don't worry about the technical and logistical issues-you are hiring me to take all of that stress off your shoulders. All that I need from you is your continued support and your willingness to pay the bills!

Good luck.

Dan Timon
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Tom Reid

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Re: I've been asked to quote for a gig that might be too big for me.
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2005, 02:09:46 pm »

I agree with the majority here.
It's time to morph from the guy that does it all, to the guy that makes sure it get's done.

Whatever that takes is up to you.
(Rent, sublet, buy steal, beg ...come on, you seen the sleazy promoters).

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tom

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