How much does a show cost ?
This depends on many factors and it’s very difficult to give a ‘ball park figure’ without knowing some basic information such as the travel distance to the venue, access times to the stage area, set up times, time spent at the venue, size of the venue and the number of guests etc. However we guarantee value for money and the standard of our show performance will be to the highest professional levels. We advise you to complete and submit the information on the ‘Secure Your Date’ page of this website after which we are usually able to give you an exact quote for our engagement fee.
How long does a show last ?
A full show usually lasts for 2 (two) hours in 2 X one-hour sets. There is an interval of about 30 – 45 minutes after the first set to allow the musicians a break for refreshments and to re-tune instruments etc. We are flexible about the start times of both sets and we are happy to fit in with your timings for the event. During the interval we will play up-tempo recorded music just as a disco would do to keep the mood going!
How do I reserve a date for a show ?
Once we have been able to give you a quote and if necessary had a discussion with you about any specific details and requirements, you can make a decision to book A Box Full Of Sparks. To reserve a date you will be asked to pay a modest deposit; this payment will secure the date for your event. If you pay this deposit by cheque the date will only be secured once the funds have cleared our bank account. The receiving of deposits to secure dates is done on a strictly ‘first come – first served’ basis. As the show is very popular (especially during the summer months when statistically weddings are more popular during sunnier, warmer, longer days) we respectfully suggest that, to avoid disappointment, you do not delay in securing your date. Please note that this initial deposit is not refundable.
Do you offer a full music solution for our event ?
The answer is “Yes”! We can include in our quote the provision of our own professional standard disco with top of the range lighting and visual effects. Our full music solution is the package that most clients book, especially for weddings. This usually means that we will provide all of your music entertainment for the entire evening, offering you a ‘one stop shop’ solution. Specific times will be discussed and agreed with you and noted in the engagement contract, but we can be flexible about start and finish times as your event develops on the day.
Can we use the band’s microphones and PA for speeches etc. ?
Broadly speaking, the answer is yes, but obviously this depends on the agreed access time for the show to be set up. If timings allow we can supply you with a professional quality radio microphone and table-top stand feeding signals into the Band’s PA – this will guarantee your guests can hear speeches irrespective of where they are sat. Alternatively, if your event is in an hotel, the hotel can usually provide a suitable mic/PA system, but we can discuss this well before the event and easily find you a solution from the Band’s equipment.
Are there any restrictions regarding the venues at which our event be staged ?
Our show has been performed in a variety of different venues including hotel ballrooms, conference centres, art and community centres, club houses, larger school halls and even in marquees. Even so, there are a few points to remember… see the list below :
Venues where the show performance room is NOT on the ground floor..
In these circumstances we can only perform at such a venue if there is a service lift directly to the floor on which the performance room is situated. We need a service lift because although most our equipment is professionally flight cased, it is heavy and bulky and the amount of equipment necessary to stage the show means that it cannot be manhandled up or down flights of stairs.
Stage access, stairs and steps…
We need to get the Show’s transport as close as possible to the stage door and/or access to the stage area. The passage ways from the Show’s transport to the stage door and from the stage door to the stage must be clear of obstructions. As already stated, equipment cannot be manhandled up or down staircases – additionally there should be no more than five (5) steps from the rear of the vehicle to the performance/stage area.
Performances in marquees…
A Box Full Of Sparks have performed many shows in marquees where they are particularly popular for weddings and school/college/summer/graduation balls etc. Please note that when we refer to ‘marquees’ we are referencing proper, professionally constructed, large, heavy duty aluminium, rigid framed units and not plastic or light gauge tubular metal framed ‘gazebos’ which are often purchased from mainstream DIY warehouse retailers. This latter type of domestic fixture is totally unsuitable for our show. Naturally, marquees must be weather proof and the stage area should be covered in flooring (rush/jute matting and/or carpet on plywood board seems popular and is suitable). The Band’s equipment cannot stand on grass, lawn or bare earth of any sort. Adequate lighting must be available during stage set up and break down, exit and vehicle loading.It is important to pay due attention to the electricity supply when the show is to perform in a marquee. The size of the marquee and the number of people attending will determine the amount of equipment that we will use and the amount of equipment used determines the number of amps drawn from the electricity supply. For marquees in larger private gardens, the amount of amps drawn from the domestic electricity supply to power the show sound reinforcement and lighting systems may be too great. In these circumstances we will discuss the details of the power supply but you should be prepared to hire a suitable generator if necessary (this is not a case where you can just run a few extension leads out of the nearest window!).
Because many marquees are pitched on grass (sometimes in a garden, sometimes in larger grounds) it is important you consider access to the stage area, and the weight of our vehicle and flight cased equipment. If we need to move the equipment over large grassed areas we need to move it quickly and efficiently. A Box Full Of Sparks cannot be held responsible for damage to grassed and/or paved areas and therefore we recommend that, if necessary, you consider creating boarded pathways along which our vehicle and equipment can be moved.
When do I sign the engagement contract ?
After we have discussed your requirements and you have accepted our quotation it’s time to book A Box Full Of Sparks show for your event. We will issue you with a contract that must be signed by both parties. The contract is an easy to understand ‘plain English’ description of the standard terms and conditions for engaging us for your event and it will also contain any specific requirements that we have agreed during our discussions. We will send you two copies, both signed by us. You will sign both copies, retain one signed copy for yourselves and return the other to us in the pre-paid addressed envelope which we will supply. If you have not already paid your initial deposit, you should include a cheque with the signed contract (and in these circumstances your date will be reserved for you as soon as the payment clears our bank account) or it must be paid online via PayPal within three (3) days of signing the contract. Payment instructions will accompany the contract.
How and when do we pay the engagement fee ?
Paying your engagement fee is split into three (3) payments. We hope that this will allow you to budget your expenditure for your event and spread the cost. You can make all three payments online through your account at this website. We accept all major debit and credit cards online and you can also pay via PayPal.
Your initial deposit…
Paying the initial deposit is most important because it exclusively reserves the date you have specified for your event. We urge you to pay this as quickly as possible after you have confirmed the event date with your proposed venue. The initial deposit amount will be made known to you prior to issuing you your contract and the amount will also be clearly defined in the ‘payment’ section of your contract. Depending on your circumstances and requirements the initial deposit is usually 15% (fifteen percent) of the total engagement fee. Please note that the initial deposit is not refundable.
Your second payment…
Your second payment will be 35% (thirty five percent) of the total engagement fee, as stated in the contract. It is not possible here to inform you when this second payment will become due because it depends on the date of receipt of your initial deposit and the date of your event, but it is reasonable to say that it will become due approximately midway between these two dates. Your contract will inform you of when this second payment is due.
Your third and final payment…
Your third and final payment will be 50% (fifty percent) of the total engagement fee. We can be reasonably specific about this third and final payment ; it must be received in our bank account 30 (thirty) days before the date of your event.
Please note that if the aforementioned payment schedule is not possible due to a very short period between your initial deposit and the date of your event (assuming the Band is available for such a short-notice performance) we will discuss with you a customised payment schedule. If you require any further information about our engagement fee or your payment schedule, please do not hesitate to contact us.
If I have to cancel my event, can I get a refund of monies paid in advance?
As previously stated, the initial deposit is not refundable. Depending on the notice that you give us for a cancellation and depending on the dates upon which you may have made your second and third payments (some clients will have made these payments ahead of the contractual schedule) some or all of the your second and third payments may be refundable. The details of cancellation timings and fees refundable, wholly or in part, will be clearly defined in your contract.
What if I have to postpone my event and how does this affect any advance payments I may have made…?
The postponement of an event can be done through negotiation with us. Assuming we are still available on the new (postponed) date we can come to an arrangement to ‘transfer’ any advance fees that you have paid to the new date. We cannot refund advanced payments during the period of a postponement and only under exceptional circumstances would we allow a postponement beyond six (6) months of the originally reserved date. But we want to remain flexible about this; the key to negotiating a postponement is early, clear and frank communication and discussion, so please contact us immediately if you think a postponement is unavoidable.