Hosting FAQ

Thinking of Hosting

+ Mark has never been to my country before, should I still apply?
Definitely! Mark is always looking to visit new places and your application may be all the extra reason we need to make it happen.
+ I’d like Mark to perform at my birthday, wedding, graduation, corporate event, etc?
Wonderful (and congratulations?), however that isn’t quite the idea behind these particular shows. Close to Home is an intimate concert series where the performance is the sole focus of the event. That said, it is still possible to book Mark to perform at your function, just send an email to Tim Arney and he'll be able to point you in the right direction.
+ How much does it cost to host?
We don't charge the host anything to host a concert. We do ask for a deposit to be paid to confirm the date, but provided we reach the required minimum number of ticket sales then your deposit will be refunded after the event. For more information see the Booking Policy.
+ Does the concert have to be in my home?
Not at all. While we typically call it a house concert, previously we’ve staged them in churches, community centres, factories, farms, palaces, you name it. If you have access to a space that can fit at least 30-40 people then perfect.
+ Can we charge extra to cover my expenses?
The idea of these concerts is that there are minimal costs to the hosts, if any, and in most circumstances we prefer to keep the price fixed to guests. If the costs are reasonable and necessary though please feel free to discuss them with us prior to the concert being confirmed and we may consider covering them from the ticket sales. For more information see the Booking Policy.
+ Can we use the event to raise funds for charity?
While we appreciate the good intention, that isn't the idea behind these particular shows. Close to Home is an intimate concert series where the performance is the sole focus of the event. If you are hosting a charity event though it is possible to book Mark to perform, just email Tim Arney and he'll be able to point you in the right direction.
+ What do I need to host a concert?
It’s pretty simple really. Fundamentally all you really need is a space for Mark to perform and a space for guests to sit. Beyond that, it’s best if everyone feels comfortable, so having an assortment of lounges, chairs, cushions and blankets for people to sit on is great. It also helps to set a warm and friendly mood, so having some candles, fairy lights, or nice lamps is always encouraged.
+ Can I specify the date or day of the week of the concert?
Mark’s schedule doesn’t usually allow for too much flexibility, but we’ll certainly do our best to accommodate when we can. Regardless, you’ll be given an opportunity to consider any date that is offered before having to commit to hosting. Alternatively, if it is important that the concert fall on a particular date then you may consider booking Mark for a private performance. If that's something you'd like to discuss please email Tim Arney and he'll point you in the right direction.
+ Is Mark's performance amplified?
Mark does use a small battery powered amplifier (or two), so we’ll need to be conscious of the sound level. If you do have close neighbours then it’s important to check that they won’t be disturbed by the performance, or better yet, invite them along free of charge!
+ I’ve hosted a concert before and would like to again, should I fill out the application?
We'd love to hear from you if you'd like to host again! If you've filled out the application form before then we should have you on file and there's no need to complete it again, but please feel free to send an email to Tim Arney to double check or remind us that you're still keen.
+ I’d like to host a concert, what do I do now?
Please fill out the application form


+ How much are tickets?
See the Booking Policy for current ticket prices.
+ Do we need to sell a minimum number of tickets?
Yes, as you can probably imagine it can be quite expensive for us to stage these shows given the cost of flights, accommodation, car rental, equipment servicing, insurance, and quite a few other things. In the event of show cancellation all ticket holders will be refunded. See the Booking Policy for further information.
+ Can I buy all the tickets?
Yes you can, so long as each guest is accounted for with a ticket.
+ Do I need to purchase a ticket for myself?
No, the host (or hosts) and anyone living where the concert will be staged do not need to purchase a ticket for themselves.

Who Can Attend

+ Can we keep the concert private?
Generally we encourage shows to be public so as to give anyone who might be interested the opportunity to attend, but typically we will defer to the host's preference. Please see the Booking Policy for further information.
+ Can children attend?
We leave it up to the host as to whether or not there are any age restrictions, but it is worth noting that we don't have any sort of concession ticket pricing. That said, whether or not children would want to attend is another question. Remember these are quite intimate, acoustic concerts, so if the child is of an age where they're unlikely to be quiet and focussed for an extended period of time then they probably wouldn't enjoy themselves and may be disruptive to the other guests. While there's a social aspect to these events, the performance itself is probably more akin to going to the cinema than a backyard barbecue. For that reason we advise against bringing children who aren't likely to be engaged and attentive. Of course that isn't always practical, so one suggestion might be for any parents to pool together and hire a babysitter to keep the children occupied away from the concert area during the performance. That way the kids will have a better time as will the audience. Of course in that instance the children and the babysitter aren't expected to have tickets as they wouldn't be participating in the performance.
+ What about pets?
Much like with children, ultimately it's up to the host as to whether they'd like to allow pets, whether their own or guests. Generally though we'd discourage pets if they're likely to roam or make much noise, as they may detract from the performance. Of course if anyone attending requires an assistance animal then they would be welcome.
+ I’m expecting the whole town to come, is that ok?
Sounds great! Just please let us know. Mark’s amplifier can only provide sound for about 100 people, so we’d need to look into hiring additional gear if we’re expecting more.

The Big Day

+ Will you give me any additional information about hosting?
Once a concert is confirmed the host will be sent a ticket link to direct invitees to, a promotional pack to help spread the word, and a hosting guide to help prepare for the big day.
+ How will the night run?
We’re flexible about the way the event runs and happy to discuss that with the host, but generally we’d aim for something like:
  • 5:30 PM: We'll arrive to help set up
  • 7:00 PM: Guests welcome to arrive
  • 8:00 PM: Performance commences
  • 9:00 PM - 9:30 PM: Performance concludes (depending upon how enthusiastic people are feeling)
  • 10:30 PM: We depart
This usually allows plenty of time for everyone to mingle before and after the performance, but not get home too late, particularly if it’s a school or work night.
+ What else will I need to do?
The main thing will be to promote the concert. It's important that there's enough interest in the event to warrant it going ahead. For more information please read the Booking Policy.
+ What if I have to cancel the event?
See the Booking Policy for up to date information about cancellation.


+ How do I know if you received my application?
You should have received a confirmation message as soon as you submitted the form. You also should have received a confirmation email, though you may want to check your spam folder in case it landed in there. If you're still not sure then email Tim Arney and he’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
+ You haven’t answered my question?
Please email it to Tim Arney and he’ll get back to you as soon as possible.