Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by MrsDoyle, Jul 31, 2009.
Does anybody have any ideas for increasing player attendance?
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ideasIncreasing attendance Does
Firstly find out why they aren't attending and address that issue first.
Place the bandroom next to a pub
That's the trouble... it is next to a pub
get a bar in the bandroom.
Also, once you find out why attendance is poor, try to address the problem. If it is one person and no reason is given, then sack them/replace them. This encourages the others to be more dedicated.
get the MD right and have him fully backed and supported by an active committee and you should find success starts to follow. Also don`t allow Band to be blackmailed /or held back by 1 or 2 players with their own agendas. Sounds ruthless but people tend to vote with their feet if there is that sort of problem going on. Start a training band if you haven`t already so that you have a future pool of players
Rehearsals need to have pace and not be bogged down. Players need to take responsibility to practice the hard bits at home rather than getting the conductor to practice them in the bandroom with everyone else bored to tears.
Also, rehearsals need to be varied. Even when a band is rehearsing for an important contest, throwing in other music helps.
Have an attendance chart on the bandroom wall.
The problem is that you can't force people to come along. I've seen this happen in a couple of bands that started to drop down the sections, turned out we/they found out who the hardcore members were when others went off for "better" bands. At the end of the day, a good social atmosphere, good fun rehearsals, and playing at the standard people enjoy is going to keep them coming. I wouldn't recommend basing the social side of things around alcohol. Many people drive to rehearsals or don't want to drink all the time - or are just too young to be interested in that.
Banding is a big important hobby for me, but it IS a hobby. If the rehearsals aren't fun, I'm less likely to feel like going along. I'm also pretty anti-social much of the time, so I don't go along to many of the things that happen in my current band, they're a nice bunch of people, and probably just think I'm a bit of a weirdo (and they'd be right ;-)). Not going to the social things doesn't stop me from wanting to go along to band, or liking my fellow members.
Something else that might help, is ensuring that people have some sort of conduit to the committee/whoever organises stuff, so that any queries they have are able to be addressed. Letting little things smoulder won't help, and a lot of people might feel that rather than cause a fuss, they'll just go elsewhere. If that "fuss" is something that could have been addressed by a little chat with a friendly committee member, then it's definitely something worth putting in place.
Often there is a problem with one or two players but if they have been there since the days of G troms or whatever, then it is hardly right to oust them for the sake of a few Johnny Come Lately kiddies who think they are God's gift to music and who will be off in a coupla years time anyway.
This strikes a chord with our band just now:
Aye, it is all a bit subjective really.
Good topic though.
Thing is, Loyalty and commitment are valuable things.
But if it's the vets that are holding the band back shouldn't something be said/done?
An organized rehearsal is a key. Start and end on time. Ending on time is particularly important - many players may have had to make child care or other arrangements and even a 10-minute over-run on the rehearsal can be a problem.
Establish and publish a standard for attendance, so that players know what is expected of them. This is not easy, because you must take into account that banding is rarely the most important thing in a player's life - you must allow flexibility for family, school, work and other commitments.
Encourage players to call the MD, band manager or other designated person when they are not going to attend and give a reason. Within the bounds of respect for privacy, make those reasons known to the band in general.
Try to have a reason for rehearsing - if the next performance is weeks away, there's little incentive for players to show.
Try and sign up a few nice looking girls, it does work !
Yeah... that ALWAYS makes me go to band... :dunno
I COULD NOT AGREE MORE!!
If you take an MD on, make sure you are going to support him/her TO THE HILT and check his/her agenda prior to appointment. I only wish we could go back to these values which, in some cases bands still do. Very rare to get a band where everyone limps when kicked nowadays. Its good to see some bands taking their time to appoint MD's now to ensure that the risk of disagreements and loyalty is not compromised.
Get a decent MD. Pretty much that's it.
Quite agree with this so many posts on here talk about nothing than alcohol being the be all and end all of banding , the first three on this thread to start with here, thankfully the remaining posts hit the nail more on the head.
Just find out what makes players enjoy coming to your band and do that. Works all the time.
If I try things my players don't seem keen on they tell me and I change tack.........
The entire world revolves around booze,money and sex.....so does banding.
Thats Pontins Contest time you are thinking of!!
Due to numerous factors, we can have a very varied attendance from one rehearsal to the next - school / college / uni / work / childcare etc etc are all major factors in an increasingly "young" band as good youth players come through. What is frustrating for several of us, though, is the lack of courtesy shown whereby folks don't bother to advise the MD that they won't be there and simply "don't turn up". As has been said many a time in our rehearsals - everyone has a mobile phone, a landline, email......surely there can be no excuse for not making a courteous effort to advise that you can't be there?
we always have apologies just before rehearsal starts given out by our band manager and I believe that helps as we all know the reason someone is missing. Stops any annoyance because usually there is a geniune reason.
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