THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN BOOKING EventS WITH BROWN BEAR SOUND
Remember: The sooner you get us involved with the planning of your event, the sooner we can help guide you with budget and logistical details.
Step 1. Determine Date, Artists.
The more notice we have, the better the chance we will be available for your event, and that we can guarantee the best pricing and make sure you stay on budget. Please provide artist technical riders and stage plots when requesting quotes so we can ensure that we have included any essential tools the artist will need to perform their best.
Step 2. Estimate Attendance/Listening Area, Event Duration & Available Power
The proposed listening area and anticipated attendance for the event is a key part in determining an appropriate sound system to meet your needs. We have a scalable system that can handle a variety of event types and sizes, but each component takes time to set up and transport, so the size of the system needed will affect the labor and rental costs we estimate. Our largest system can fit through standard doorways and roll into place on wheels. If the venue is wheelchair accessible (whether with ramps, a loading bay or a freight elevator), we can easily load in our system with one person. If the only way access to the performance area is to navigate stairs, we'll either need to downsize the rig or hire extra hands to help move the equipment, both of which affect the budget.
If the venue dimensions and load-in/load-out conditions are unknown when you request the estimate, we may require a site visit to review the layout, parking and electrical infrastructure. Estimates and site visits are free of charge at this time.
Our smallest rig runs on a single 20A 120v power circuit, but our largest rig requires a Nema14-50 230v plug (like you would use to plug in a dryer or stove). If you are planning to rent a generator to provide power for the sound system, make sure to let us know what connectors it will have, and have a qualified electrician properly ground the chassis and monitor fuel levels throughout the event. Our largest rig at full output would require a generator with a minimum of 6,000 running watts and 30,000 starting watts. When possible, Inverter generators are greatly preferred over AVR type generators for this type of task, and they should always be electrically bonded to the stage frame and connected to earth with a dedicated ground rod.
For the event duration, there are a few factors to consider. First, it takes us anywhere from 2-6 hours to prepare a sound system for sound check, depending on the load-in proximity and scale of the event. Second, the more acts that need to sound check, the longer that process will take, especially if the artists are travelling from out of town and may or may not be exactly on schedule. Sound checks can be 15 minutes to 3 hours, depending on the size of the group, complexity of the instrumentation, number of monitor mixes involved, and number of acts. A seasoned touring band can complete a sound check in half the time it takes a band that is just starting out. If the audience area is a multi-purpose area (like a dinner or awards ceremony) we need to know the latest we can be performing our sound-check before silence is required. Finally, estimate the performance duration so we can determine the engineer labour costs.
Don't forget to allow space for the sound system in the venue design. It's easy to overlook, but after the dance floor and stage are in place, remember that there will still be stands, speakers, cabling, equipment racks, and a mixing position that take up space in the venue, and interconnect cables from the mixing position to the stage that require vehicle-free paths as directly as possible. Storage for equipment cases may be needed near the performance area for indoor events where the loading dock cannot be easily accessed.
Step 3. Sign Contract, Pay Deposit (Typically 50%, 30 days before show).
We only ask for a signed contract and a 10% deposit to book a show and make sure the equipment is prepped and ready for your event. 50% Deposit is then due 30 days in advance of your show date (The 10% deposit is non-refundable for any reason. The 50% deposit is non-refundable but is transferrable to alternate dates, pending availability), with the remaining 40% due via check or cash at the conclusion of Sound Check on your show date.
Step 4. Stay In Touch!
This is one that's often overlooked-- as we get closer to show date, make sure you keep us apprised of any changes to the event, the schedule or the attendance. If you're expecting a sellout crowd, we will want to make sure the ordered sound system remains adequate for your needs.