Updated on Tuesday, December 29, 2020
Some say we are in the third inning of a nine-inning ballgame. At times, it feels that way. As an entertainment company, we see this as a three-phase scenario, nearing the end of the first. These phases are:
#1: Reschedule, reschedule, reschedule
#2 Perform in the short term (the first half of 2021)
#3: Perform in the long term (the second half of 2021)
We are focusing on #2 and #3, specifically, how to accommodate our upcoming weddings.
It’s a tough prospect. Like every other business, we have to weigh risk vs. reward. We all want to perform, but at what cost?
Every state has different guidelines.
Medical centers have differing opinions.
Politics are influencing the perception of medical determinations.
So ultimately, we are forging our own path and doing what we feel we must.
WS has taken a conservative approach to public safety. We believe a band may be a vehicle of viral spread. Our musicians will have multiple weddings within a week. They will come in contact with upwards of 100 guests on a Saturday wedding, then more on a Sunday wedding the next day, followed by another Friday or Saturday wedding 5 or 6 days later. So beyond the health of you, your guests, and our artists, we have to consider the safety of everyone the band comes in contact with 7-14 days post-performance.
We formulated safety measures for the Summer of 2020, which extend into early 2021. Our goal is to mitigate risk to our artists & community while creating an excellent experience for all. These measures are as follows:
* We can perform in an outdoor, tented environment. We are unable to perform indoors.
* Due to Travel Bans, and the need for social distancing, we are unable to engage in overnight events.
* To maintain social distancing while performing, we require additional space for the band. We hear a lot of talk about the distance between guests, but we have to create distance between band members, too. The act of singing is believed by some medical professionals to be a significant form of transmission.
While the space needed varies per band, here is an example of what we request for an 8 person band:
The performance area located under the tent must be a minimum of 26 feet wide, by 12 feet deep. This, in addition to a 6-foot distance between the band and dance floor.
* We cannot allow guests on the band-stand, or to physically interact with the artists (inside of 6 feet). We’ll provide a sleek, protective stanchion in front of the band.
* Our artists & personnel reserve the right to wear a mask. Such masks will be sleek, or festive in style (not surgical masks).
* We will provide a designated wireless microphone for toasts/ speeches. We will sanitize this microphone after each use.
* We request that you forward the final balance before the event to avoid unnecessary on-site interaction.
Some of the above may not sound ideal, or feasible as the winter months approach. And as of late December 2020, the above is;t even allowed in MA with the rollback of indoor gathering limits. So bear in mind, we also have options for cost-free rescheduling to available 2021-2022 dates, when we hope such measures/restrictions will no longer apply. Or, we can offer smaller ensembles so long as the event takes place in an out-door tented environment.
As for our early April and May 2021 weddings v.s. whether our safety measures will apply, this is a decision we’ll make ASAP. Like everyone else, we are taking things day by day, week by week.
We place a high priority on treating people the way we want to be treated. Throughout the pandemic, we’ve sustained massive losses while some of our competitors stick to “nonrefundable deposits”, impose significant up-charges for rescheduling to “prime 2021 Saturdays” and even require “full payment” for cancellations. We know this because many of these adversely affected families ended up becoming our clients.
But now, as re-opening continues, we also must look towards protecting our artists & community. While flexibility is a cornerstone of our business, we cannot be flexible when public safety is at stake.
Q: What does all this mean if I want to hold an in-door reception at a time when you are only able to perform outdoors? What are my options?
A: We can provide a DJ. If this does not suit you, we will refund your deposit and recommend other entertainment companies who may be able to assist you.
There’s no judgment. We’ll respect your decision, and we ask you to respect ours.
We hope you’ll hang in there, focus on the positive, and take things day by day, as we are! Stay well and let us know if you need anything.
The Wilson Stevens Team