Create Your Own Virtual Concert Hall

March 19, 2020

We know at the moment many musicians worldwide are finding themselves in a situation where their concerts are cancelled, and they are forced to stay at home. Needless to say, the financial and artistic implications of this can be extremely challenging.

In times such as this, online platforms and digital content are a very effective way to continue to reach and grow your audience, even though you’re unable to play for them in a concert hall. Our digital team at Knight Classical specialise in creating content for musicians, so we’ve been thinking about the best ways to help musicians who are stuck at home during this time, how they can stay musically active and keep earning money.

Here are a few things which might be helpful:

Patreon ‘Virtual Concert Hall’

Patreon is a fantastic platform for generating income and reaching your online audience, enabling them to buy into what you do as much or as little as they want to. With it you can offer memberships on tiered packages. Members get access to your exclusive content and, in turn, you receive income from their membership fees. The higher the tier of membership, the more exclusive access the member gets. You can also offer content for free anytime as a gift to your audience or as teaser content to attract new members.

It is completely flexible in terms of the packages and content you can offer, and it can effectively become your own virtual concert hall, offering access to home concert streams, as well as teaching / how-to videos, pre-recorded performances, interviews, talks, Q&As and much more. Obviously it doesn’t have to be just video content, audio recordings of performances, talks, podcasts etc. are excellent options as well. You can even create and sell your own bespoke gift products for people to give to loved ones, such as the musical Mother’s Day cards Gabriella Swallow is offering (which you should definitely buy!), the sky’s the limit!

To really make the most of it, we would encourage you to think long-term and create something which can live on far beyond the current crisis, to build an audience and revenue stream that can continue to grow far into the future.

Live Streamed Home Concerts

If you’re stuck at home, then a great way to still perform for your audience, as you’ve no doubt seen many musicians do, is via a live streamed concert from your own home. Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter all have live streaming functions and it can be done directly from a mobile phone, or with a more technical setup using a camera and some free computer software, such as OBS.

Streams can either be offered free, with a link to allow viewers to make donations via PayPal, or offered privately by selling virtual tickets and then providing ticket holders with a link to the stream. This is a tricky balance in the current climate of course, so we suggest using a combination, with donations being probably the best option so as not to restrict people who can’t afford to join in, but for those who can, to contribute if they would like to.

One excellent idea we’ve seen is to do a virtual tour of social media, offering concerts on each of the major platforms, using them as venues.

‘As Live’ Streaming

If you’re not so keen on the idea of performing live on a stream, then you can very easily use some pre-recorded footage and stream the video file ‘as live’. The experience for the audience is essentially the same. What’s more, you could then include a live Q&A as part of the stream, where you can respond to comments and questions and chat to the audience in real-time.

Free Planning and Advice Sessions

Throughout this time, our digital team want to be available to all artists as much as possible to help you make the most of digital and to plan to make the most of it in the future. If you’d like to talk to us about anything digital, ask questions, or make some future plans and would like some information or advice, please do let us know and we can organise a free online session, no strings, just to help!

Talk to Us, We’re Here to Help!

If you’re wanting to do any of these things, but are unsure about how to do so technically, or have any other ideas or questions regarding making the most of digital, then please do get in touch with Martin Kendrick, our Head of Digital, on martin@knightclassical.com and he’ll do his best to help. It’s free advice, no strings attached, we’re here to help!

As a side note, if you are in a position to do so and think this could be a useful time to build a new website, get some existing video footage edited and released, or anything else we could do for you in a more ‘standard’ sense, please do still get in touch as well. Our digital division is still very much open for business and all of our digital services are all available on monthly payment plans, to spread the cost over longer periods in order to make it more affordable and manageable.

Primarily at this time though, our digital team are focusing on doing their best to offer help and advise where possible, so we can all get the most out of the amazing tools available to us and to get through this very challenging time together. So please do get in touch, our virtual door is and will remain open!