How to find recital recording gigs

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by tunefoolery, Jan 26, 2009.

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  1. tunefoolery

    tunefoolery Active Member

    Jan 26, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Hi Everyone,

    I'm slowly developing a business of recording classical recitals and music performances. My question to all of you is: how do I market my recording services to this particular sector? Do you have any tips about how I can market myself to classical music teachers and performers?

    Here's some background: I have a background in classical music; when I was studying piano at USC I began recording some of my fellow piano students. Then I began recording some of their students, and I continued to record students at the USC music school. Now I'm trying to ramp things up a bit and would like to branch out into recording recitals of private music teachers. I'm putting up flyers at music stores (where teachers buy their books) and have found some contact info for teachers on the internet, but I'd like to find a more comprehensive and perhaps more sensible way to make myself known to this set of people. Any suggestions?

  2. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Distinguished Member

    Dec 12, 2001
    Oberlin, OH
    Home Page:
    You might want to read about this subject at Gearslutz(Dead Link Removed)

    Right now there seems to be less and less people having classical recordings done except when they need them for submission to contests and then they usually want video as well as audio to send to the contest they are entering.

    Around here many classical concert series have been canceled due to funding problems, symphony orchestras are going belly up, music schools and conservatories are turning out many more GREAT performers with no job prospects, opera companies are going belly up and the list goes on and on. Maybe with some money from Obama's bail out plan the arts will get the funding that the really need.

    As to finding teachers. In Ohio there is an organization called OMEA which is Ohio Music Educators Association and I assume California has someting similar and they are a good place to start. They usually have a way to join and then you can have access to their mailing lists.

    Right now I would think seriously about being only classical music based as it seems to be a dying art. It is to bad. I have done classical music recording for 40 years and it has provided me a very good living now I am not sure what is going on.

    I read on line and saw on a news program that many many more people are staying at home and not venturing out for a couple of reasons. First everything from parking to ticket prices have gone way up. Secondly they can watch DVDs on their TV sets for little or no money and can even get them for free from the library, Thirdly crime has increased and people are afraid to venture out at night because they are afraid they will get car jacked or mugged. People joke about "man caves" but pretty soon it is going to be "family caves" You should read and

    Best of luck and maybe start doing a lot of networking before you get out of school. It is always easier to network when you are with a lot of like minded people.

    Best of Luck! :wink:
  3. tunefoolery

    tunefoolery Active Member

    Jan 26, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Thanks for your extensive reply, Thomas. thanks also for the links to the discussions, which I read completely.

    Yes, the prospects for classical recording do look bleak. But I should clarify that I'm not looking to depend on this gig as a large part of my income. I'm just looking for a moderate increase in the number of gigs I do.... I have a day job as a piano teacher; I have a pretty large roster of mid- to high- income clients, which has stayed steady for almost 10 years (from when I started music school). In these dire times, I'm certainly grateful to have steady work.

    I'm targeting music students and music teachers for my recording business because I already know and work with some of them, and I feel there may be a niche for me there. I know there are teachers who may need just a basic digital recording of themselves or their students, and they may be too daunted to hire a professional recording engineer (whether they should be or not!)... They seem to appreciate someone who has some technical knowledge and who knows about classical music and has a classical background.

    Why cultivate a recording business? Well, because there are times of the year when my teaching income goes down, and I need income from a an alternate source. Saving some $ from recording gigs throughout the year can help me get through those times.

    By the way, I've been out of school for a few years now. My career ambition is to write music for films and video games. No need to tell me how difficult that is; I've been at it for a few years now. And I've been making progress, albeit incremental progress. I remain hopeful.

    I'm just trying to "succeed" in the way that I see most composers and musicians succeeding in L.A.: by having multiple, solid irons in the fire.

    Thanks again for all the information. And I welcome any further comments or suggestions you may have.

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