©2019 Rachel Somerset | All Rights Reserved      London, United Kingdom | (+44)  020 888 19276 / (+44) 07808 126105

  • Rachel
  • Rachel Somerset's Instagram Feed

                                   FAQ

Do you travel anywhere in the UK?

Yes, I travel all over the country, and abroad. Travel expenses apply.

How do you calculate travel expenses?

Travel expenses are calculated from my North London base.

 Can I select the songs I want from your repertoire list myself?

Yes, of course. You may select the songs you want played at your event yourself, specially if it is during a Wedding Ceremony. The selection should be chosen and confirmed no later than 3 weeks before the date of your event.

May I request a piece of music which isn't on your repertoire list?

Yes, you may. With plenty of notice, almost any song can be arranged for your event. Fees start from £20 per new song, depending on the complexity of each piece required.

I don't know what songs to choose for my wedding ceremony. Can you help me select appropriate wedding songs?

Yes, absolutely. I will discuss some alternatives with you, and you will be able to choose the songs you like most.

Can you liaise with the wedding planer to make sure everything runs according to plan?

Yes. but the contract will be between you and me. The wedding planner should understand timings have been agreed between you and me beforehand, and these times should be respected. The planner cannot make major changes to the terms such as changes of times of over 10/15 minutes, song selection etc. Any major decisions and changes have to come directly from the client. 

 

How long should I book you before the day of my event?

To avoid any disappointment I suggest you contact me at least 1 year before your wedding/event day, as clients normally book way in advance, specially if your event is to take place during the summer months.

 

Can you move rooms during your performance?

Yes, ideally only once though. Bear in mind the sound system and the rest of the equipment must also be moved with me and the violin. Make sure a reserved space is left empty for me and my equipment with easy access to electricity in both rooms.

 

What will you wear?

I will wear an elegant dress/smart outfit, an asian dress, or other, depending on the kind of event you are having and your personal requirements. This will be agreed upon exchange of contracts.

 

Our wedding ceremony and wedding reception are at different venues. Can you play at both?

Yes, travel costs between the venues would apply.

 

Are you insured?

Yes, I am fully insured.

 

How do I book you?

You may email/message/phone myself or any of my agents/agencies to discuss your event. Packages will be provided and after selecting the best option for your event, we shall draw an agreement and email it over to you. You will need to sign it and return the agreement together with a 50% deposit. My direct prices are set, however if booking through an agency you may  pay agency fees on top of my normal set fees.

 

How much is the deposit?

The non-refundable deposit is 50% of the total quote/Package.

 

After the deposit is paid and my date is officially booked, when shall I pay the remainder?

 The remainder is payable 14 days before your event. 

 

Can I come and hear you play live?

I normally play at private events, so therefore cannot invite you along. My public performances may be advertised on my website, Instagram or Facebook pages. With up to 180 events  booked each year my time is strictly spent rehearsing for upcoming events and administrating my business.

If we don't meet personally before my event, how will I know you understand everything about my ceremony or event?

I have over 17 years experience in performing professionally at weddings and events across the globe. I arrive at the venue at least 1 hour before I am due to start performing.  Within this 1 hour I will set up and discuss any minute details with your organisers, registrars, family members, etc.

Can you play outdoors?

Yes, however only during the Spring/summer season. The temperature must be higher than 19 Degrees Celsius (I cannot wear a coat or jacket while performing the violin, so it must be warm enough that I can comfortably wear a sleeveless outfit outdoors). it cannot be raining, nor windy at all. The client must also provide appropriate shelter from direct sun light or sudden unexpected rain (sheltered area, gazebo, covered terrace etc...). The instruments and equipment cannot be exposed to direct sunlight. Access to safe electricity is also needed. A white gazebo can be hired directly with my team if your venue is unable to offer one themselves. The fee for a Gazebo hire is £50 (partially refundable in case the weather is not suitable on the day and the gazebo is not set up or needed). All the terms above must be met for an outdoors performance to be acomodated.

Do you take breaks?

Yes. a 10/15 minute break is required within each hour of playing time, depending on the length of the booking.  For 1 hour bookings I  perform throughout the entire hour without the need for a break.

 

Would you play with another musician who we have decided to have during the event as well, or accompany a singer during my wedding ceremony?

Yes, if discussed in advance and if the other person is a confident performer. Rehearsal times, if needed, will be charged from £80 per hour depending on the number os hours needed and day during the week. travel charges apply. Rehearsals are not often needed, as your other musician should be able to work directly with me via email/phone.

 

How flexible are you if things over run on the day and we need you to stay longer?

Weddings normally run a tad late (10 minutes expected), and a 10 minute delay is expected within every single one of my bookings. I will however leave at the end of the time agreed if I need to travel to a different event (up to 3 events can be booked on any given date). This should come as no surprise to the client as the times are agreed beforehand. If I am able to and agree to play for longer than the agreed time, an overtime fee will be charged.

 

Can we book you for 1 hour or less?

Yes. my minimal fee is £200, plus travel expenses to your particular venue.

 

Can you walk down the aisle while playing the violin?

Yes, absolutely. My violin has its own high-spec wireless system, which allows me free movement within the hall/room/stage/area  where the performance is taking place.

 

Do I get a discount?

My prices are set and only differ from client to client depending on the location of their venue. A client who wishes to book my services for a second time or more will receive a 5% discount on their second booking and 10% off any future bookings after that. It would be unprofessional and unfair to provide different prices to different prospect clients.  My pricing is reviewed each year and all clients enquiring within the same year period will receive the same packages from me, with the only difference being travel expenses to each client's  different venue location.

Do you provide your own sound system/PA?

Yes, I have my own professional sound system which is suitable for up to 700 guests, making myself one of the only professional violinists in the UK  who is able to offer such a large system as part of my packages. An appropriate  sound system will be included in all packages provided where up to 150 guests are expected. If you are expecting between 151 and 250 guests an additional cost of £50 apply. If you are expecting between 251 and 450 guests an additional cost of £95 apply. If you are expecting between 451 and 700 an additional cost of £165 apply. If you are providing your own DJ  with a suitable sound system for the number of guests you are expecting, and they agree to let me plug my instruments directly into their system, then there would be no additional costs for a  suitable sound system.

My venue requires a PAT test certificate. Is your equipment PAT tested?

Yes, all the equipment used during my performances are PAT tested and a certificate of compliance can be emailed straight to the venue, upon request. All certificates are with me at every single event in case they are required during set up.

 

Can you perform a "solo violin" without any backing tracks?

Yes. a violin performance without any sort of backing for over 10 minutes is however not recommended as the violin sound will be  'lonely', hence this is the maximum length I would perform without accompaniment.  My full performances are accompanied by bespoke and professionally arranged backing tracks, as per the majority of my demos. You would not wish to hire a solo singer, for example, to sing at your event without accompaniment, and the same thought should apply to a solo violinist or any other melody instrument. 

Do you, after having spent thousands of pounds on top of the range instruments and equipment (and yearly maintenance and insurance of these expensive instruments), after spending hundreds of pounds each year on insurances and compliance tests for all your sound equipment,  having had years of private tuition and arduous effort to become the professional musician you are today,  after suffering from back and neck pain due to daily numerous hours of practice and rehearsal time, countless daily hours of administration, expensive advertising investment, and after having established yourself as one of the most sough-after events violinists in the United Kingdom, offer your professional skills and beautiful live performances for free? 

I proudly offer my services totally free of charge to Her Majesty The Queen, whenever Her Majesty requires.