much do you charge? It
depends on what you want, where and when, and what size of band you require.
For this reason we prefer to quote individually, and you can e-mail
or telephone for a price.
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does the band consist of? The band is based around the Springer Sisters duo which consists
of Pamela (on fiddle, banjo and guitar) and Carole on (accordion, whistle
and guitar). We do our own
calling to let you know what to do.
For the three piece band we add a bass player, who might be playing
electric or string bass, or a tuba. If
a four piece band is required we use either a trombone player, second banjo
or drummer. If a 5 or 6 piece band is
wanted it can also be arranged. All
the musicians we use are regulars with us.
We are not really a singing band but one of our musicians will
occasionally sing Irish songs, but she needs notice for this. Back to top
does a typical barn dance work? We
usually begin by playing one or two listening tunes, particularly if people
are still arriving. Once there
are enough people present to make a good set, we will start the dancing.
We always start with an easy one so nobody need feel intimidated.
We always walk you through the dances before they start, and carry on
with the calling instructions while the dance is actually going on.
The dances may get more complicated as the evening goes on, but you
will be used to us and our calling style by then.
There is absolutely no pressure to get it right, in fact itís often
more fun when it goes wrong. Our normal pattern is to do two dances,
followed by a listening tune to allow the dancers to get their breath back,
followed by two more dances etc. Sometimes
the organiser will request just listening music for a while so people can
socialise before the dancing starts, and in this instance we follow your
lead. The interval is whenever
you tell us, too. Back to top
large and how small an event will you play for?
have played for 400 plus, down to very small gatherings.
One of our favourite gigs was a barn dance for thirty people where
almost everybody danced every dance. Back
kind of music do you play? We
have a repertoire of mainly Irish, English, Scottish and American
traditional tunes for the dancing, and our listening music often includes
other elements such as ragtime, jazz and swing.
Some people confuse barn dances with line dancing which is something
we donít do, and we do not play Country and Western.
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long will you play for? A
typical barn dance or ceilidh consists of two 60 to 90 minute sets with a break of
about half an hour in between, but we can be flexible to suit what you are
doing. Generally we think three
hours of dancing is plenty for any crowd.
If an event is going so well that people donít want to stop we can
play longer by arrangement on the night.
On the occasions when we are playing just background music we may
need more frequent breaks. Back to top
you accommodate children/ foreigners/ people with disabilities? In
a word, yes. We do ask,
however, that children are kept under control so that they donít get
trodden on during the dancing etc, and particularly we donít like them (or
anybody else) on the stage. We
find that where there are non-English speaking guests they quickly pick up
what is needed to join in, particularly where the natives help them.
We have often called dances where wheelchairs have participated, and
we have fond memories of a group of octogenarians who needed extra bars of
music inserted in order to fit their dancing speed.
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about weddings? We do a lot of weddings. We can start with a traditional bride and groom waltz or
with a simple first dance for everybody, in which bride and groom take a
leading role. We can finish
with a wedding arch or with a waltz as required.
We have found that at some weddings
everybody wants to dance all the time, and at others people would rather
chat and listen to the music; weíre
happy to do it either way. Back to top
would like our event to have a theme. Can
you fit in with this? We
can give your dance a Scottish, Irish, or American
bias (but please see our Scottish page for an explanation of the way we run
a Scottish dance for
English people). We have
also joined in with other peopleís themes in the past, for instance we
played as pirates on one occasion, and weíre always ready to discuss the
possibilities. Back to top
we hear you play? So many of our bookings are for private
parties that itís not often possible to direct you to a public gig, but we
have lots of sound
on the web site. Back to top
long do you need to set up before a dance? We
will arrive with a minimum of half an hour in hand to unload, set up equipment
and do our sound checks. Back to top
do you need us to provide?
A stage or secure area, minimum floor space 16 ft by 6 ft, easy access to a
13 amp power point, a table to put our equipment on, and some chairs.
do you like to be paid? We
will ask for a deposit at the time the booking is made, and this can be paid
by cheque. The balance is payable on the night . Back
safety precautions can we rely on? Our
electrical equipment is PAT tested annually and the band carries Public
Liability insurance, both things that your venue might need to know.
During performances we appreciate clientsí co-operation in keeping
intruders off the stage and children out from under the feet of dancers for
example. Back to top
you play acoustically or amplified?
can do either, but for any performance that involves calling dances
amplification is essential for the caller to be heard above the music and
the dancing feet. Acoustic is
often fine in a small venue when only background music is required.
We would discuss this beforehand. Back to top
happens if we have a disco as well? If
you book a disco as well, which people often do for weddings it is best to
have the barn dance or ceilidh part of the evening first, and then the
disco. Alternating the two
doesnít work well. The band
and the disco will both need enough space to set up without either impinging
on the other. )
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far afield do you travel?
We play mainly around South-East England . Back to top
you play in the open air? Yes,
in summer weather, but with restrictions. If
we are outside in the evening we can run into problems as the sun goes down,
because the dew forming can affect the electrical equipment and is not very good
for the instruments either. If we
are in a gazebo or open sided tent or similar we donít have a problem.
Daylight playing presents no problems as long as it doesnít rain.
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far ahead should we book you? Our
regular clients often re-book immediately for the following year, and weddings
by their nature are often booked well in advance,.
If you have a particular date to fill then itís best to book early, but like any other band we do have gaps and itís always
worth a try if you have a short notice requirement.
We can often put you in touch with another band if we canít help.
Most people who arenít regulars or organising weddings book about three
or four months ahead. Back to top
the procedure when we book you? If
after discussion either by telephone or e-mail you want to make a definite
booking we will take all the details from you and send a written agreement
through the post. There will be two copies, one for you to keep and one for you
to sign and send back with your deposit. Back
you reliable? We
have not let anyone down in 25 years. Once you have returned the booking
agreement we will not accept another booking for your date. Back
if we have to cancel? As
is standard practice, we charge a cancellation fee if the booking is cancelled
less than 90 days before it was due to take place, and the rate is pro-rata to
the amount of notice given. The
scale of fees in printed on the back of each booking agreement, or can be
supplied on request. If we manage
to get another booking for a cancelled date, we return the cancellation fee.
We donít like charging, but we have to pay the musicians we engage.
In exceptional circumstances we are sympathetic. Back
we enjoy ourselves?
YES!!!!!! Back to top