We play strictly as a quartet for various reasons.
For example, the selection of music for a quartet is much larger than that for a duo or trio.
A quartet also offers a fuller, richer range of sound. A trio or duo can sound as though a part is missing.
Normal attire is tuxedos for the men and all black for the ladies.
When performing in higher temperatures, the men will wear a white shirt, tie and slacks while the ladies wear all
black or a white blouse with dark pants.
We arrive one hour early for weddings in order to set-up, warm-up and work out details with the coordinator and/or officiant.
For other types of events, we arrive 30 minutes before our scheduled start time.
We require a deposit with a signed contract in order to reserve your date. The contract can be sent to you electronically in either MS Word or PDF format. It outlines the date, time, location, special requests and environmental conditions.
Itís hot! Itís even hotter when playing an instrument in 90+ degree weather. High temperatures are bad for us and even worse for our instruments.
There are other quartets that will play outdoors during the summer months. The quartet manager is happy to provide references.
Below are some considerations. We can be flexible, but only within reason.
Water: Our instruments cannot be exposed to any amount of water (rain, drizzle, and spray from a fountain). Tents do not always provide adequate protection as they often leak.
Direct Sunlight: Depending on temperatures, we cannot be placed in direct sunlight as it is harmful to the varnish on the instruments and causes them go out of tune. Please let the quartet manager know if your venue does not offer adequate shade. We can bring a canopy to help resolve this issue.
Extreme Heat or Cold: We cannot perform outdoors when the temperature drops below 60 or exceeds 90. Extreme temperatures are very hard on our instruments and our performers.
If your outdoor venue is close to a building, shaded porch, gazebo, etc., the quartet can play in the shade while your event stays in the beautiful outdoors.
If there is no shade, the quartet can bring its own canopy. (No charge)
If you are planning an outdoor event, please consider an indoor option at the venue. If the weather does not cooperate, youíll want the option of moving indoors. Based on conditions at the time, the decision to move indoors can be made by you and venue management.
Would you rough house with grandma if she were 100 years old? We rough house with our instruments every time we rehearse or perform and our instruments are on average 100 years old. But our instruments are made of delicate wood and varnish.
The worst thing you can do to a violin, viola or cello is expose it to moisture, direct sunlight, elevated heat or cold. Even a little water, heat or cold can ruin an instrument that costs as much as a nice, new car. Wooden instruments are sturdy when used properly but can be easily damaged under the wrong conditions.
Yes, as long as conditions are appropriate. Unfortunately, even the best of tents will leak through holes, vents and seams. Tents do not offer protection against extreme temperatures. Also, tents can be very expensive. An indoor option at your venue is normally offered at no additional charge.
Yes, the venue should provide 4, armless chairs. (We may need extra chairs if you choose to have additional performers such as a trumpet or singer.) If the venue does not provide chairs, please let the quartet manager know so that we may bring our own.
Itís your event, not ours. Let us know what you prefer and we will tailor the set list accordingly.
We have a very large and broad library and normally play a mix of classical, contemporary and popular tunes.
No, we do not attend the wedding rehearsal.
Instead, the quartet manager will provide you with a CD of your ceremony music so that the wedding party can hear the pieces and/or practice walking through with them.
We arrive one hour early specifically to meet with the wedding coordinator and officiant to arrange cues for the music.
Timing questions are handled on the day of the ceremony. Timing is typically very different from rehearsal to ceremony.
We are adept at adaptation.
Yes, so long as the music you select includes a trumpet part. We have several pieces in our repertoire that allow for trumpet. The cost of hiring a trumpet player, if needed, is extra. If you have a friend that is playing for you at no charge, there is no charge from the quarter.
Please be sure to let the quartet manager know that you want a trumpet player so that the cost can be included in your quote.
Certainly! We are happy to play with vocalists or additional instrumentalist.
A few notes about accompanying others:
Please provide notice as soon as possible. We need time to prepare the music and coordinate rehearsal(s) with the soloist.
There is no charge to accompany your friends or guests. However, if you choose to have the quartet hire a vocalist or instrumentalist, the cost will be added to quartetís fee.
If the music is not readily available for string quartet, an arrangement will need to be commissioned. Please refer to the Special Requests page for details.
If your soloist(s) is out of town, we can record our accompaniment and mail it to them ahead of time. Once the soloist is in town, we will arrange for a rehearsal prior to the event.
We cannot accompany bagpipes. Bagpipes tune to and play non-standard pitches. This makes it nearly impossible for standard orchestral instruments to play in tune with a bagpipe.
We begin playing when the first guests arrive, typically 20 minutes before the scheduled ceremony time. We can add more music if needed.
If the ceremony is significantly delayed or prolonged, (more than 90 minutes) additional fees may apply.
We understand that weddings and special events can be delayed. We are flexible so long as the amount of time is reasonable. (A delay of more than 30 minutes may be considered unreasonable without justification.)
We may book more than one event in a single day. Because of our obligation to other clients, we cannot stay longer than the time specified on your contract. If we have an event following yours, we will advise you and/or your wedding director.