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This thread is so off topic of the original Dark Ages thread that I"m 
change it's title for the sake of people who are searching the archives in 
the future.

    David wrote:
"I'd very much like to start a thread on house concerts. This may not be 
proper forum, but we're outfitting a small stage and performance venue in
our home that will seat 35-to-40 people. All proceeds, after we pay the
musicians, will go to charity. This is in the suburbs of Houston, Texas.
Anyone else out there with experience in this kind of thing? If so, what
is fair admission fee? any hassles with neighborhood associations? do
you serve food? how do you go about identifying performers? I'll be
glad to share what we've collected (articles, advice, etc.) with anyone
who is interested"

>From my experience,   a good price to charge is $10/  with noone turned 
for lack of funds
so that you are not discriminatory for people who are interested in 

Additionally, since it is a house concert, you can always ask anyone 
to come in for
less than the donation cost to please help out with CD sales or food 
services or clean up at the end
of the evening.    Anyone who is not just trying to get something for 
nothing will  gladly help out.

A great strategy is to tell your neighbors in advance and ask for their 
By all means, invite them to attend, free of charge.  They will never come 
assure you but it gives them
the illusion that they have freedom in the matter.

Be sure and assure them that you want to be very sensitive to their needs 
(viz a vis noise complaints,
parking crowding, etc.)

A great strategy is to offer to buy them tickets to the movies on the 
concert in question.  Frequently they won't take you
up on it but it is worth a couple of admission fees to make sure that they 
don't complain.

Viz a vis food,  I wouldn't go to that hassle unless you really want 
everyone to feel great about the concert and don't mind
putting energy into something that will  probably not return the 

Things like this are never big money makers,  they are labors of love and 
very necessary labors of love as new and emerging
artistry is crowded out of this culture's venues.

Good luck.