Bristol-based folk singer Saskia Griffiths-Moore comes to Ashington Village Club on a southern-UK tour of donation-based concerts.
As David Grout, who is promoting the tour locally, explains: “Saskia has put together an October series of entirely donation-based concerts to encourage people to come out and support their local live music scene.
“With a support slot from Maisie Peters, a young local singer-songwriter, she will be bringing this free concert to Ashington Village Club on Friday, October 21 (doors 7.45pm).
“After an initial trial concert in Bristol, Saskia found the donation model to be effective in attracting new audiences. It works by putting on a concert and allowing tickets to be reserved entirely free of charge. During the interval and at the end of the performance there is an opportunity to make a discreet donation to the artist/s in a stationary hat. It is by no means compulsory.
“Saskia, who began her career busking, wants to encourage people to take a risk on a live performance of music, and not to be put off by an imposing ticket price. She is confident that if the concert is suitably impressive and entertaining, that the audience will be inclined to voluntarily donate enough money to make it a viable concert model.”
Saskia explains: “Right from my early days busking, people have supported my music. And now I feel inclined to welcome people into a musical experience without necessarily charging anything. I feel confident they’ll give back if they’ve enjoyed their time.”
Judging by her trial donation-based concert in Bristol, people welcome the idea of a free concert and do indeed give back.
“The concert was booked out a month in advance, and people on average donated twice what we would have charged as a ticket price,” says Saskia. “Sometimes, tickets prices can put people off, especially if they haven’t seen me perform before. I want to encourage them to take a risk! And to open the concert experience to people who perhaps don’t have much of a disposable income right now. I’d still rather they come and enjoy the music, even if all they have to give is a thank you.”
Previously a Harley Street therapist, Saskia Griffiths-Moore has relied entirely on crowdfunding and public support to record and tour her original music, which draws on Americana, folk and singer-songwriter genres.
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