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Old 11-04-02, 03:54 PM   #1
Stretch
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Post agent contract

Anyone ever see a contract like this? http://www.younameitenterprises.com/...8913/index.htm


scroll down to the very bottom and click the link to read the consulting agreement.

You, the entertainer, pay a fee apon acceptance, plus a percentage of the gig. ?!!!?

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Old 11-05-02, 04:19 AM   #2
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Fuzzy stuff, indeed...

It states pretty clearly what the Booking Agent is all entitled to, but it's a bit silent about the performer. What happens if you pay a fee before your gig and it gets cancelled last minute? Or what if you don't get paid at all?

And it doesn't stay WHAT percentage the booking agent wants, "a percentage" cab be anything up to 100%...
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Old 11-05-02, 11:40 AM   #3
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I would presume that this company, for which entertainment is only a small part of their revenue, (they do rock-climbing walls, inflatables, water games, etc.) that they have a catch-all contract, which doesn't really work for what we do. An there's no reason why you can't send them an "addendum" to their contract which more clearly defines the terms. You can even (gasp!) cross things out on any contract that you don't want to agree to. Just because it's written on paper doesn't mean it's set in stone.

FYI, The webpage states:

[quote]Booking Fees:
All booking fees are based on the type of vendor in regard to their moneymaking abilities and limits, gross revenue projections; the size, length and type of event; and number of hours open for business at an event. Therefore, booking fees will vary from event to event. Generally, smaller fees will go with smaller events that have lower revenue projections and larger fees with larger events that have higher revenue possibilities.<hr></blockquote>

It makes sense that they wouldn't give one single percentage set in stone (althought that would be nice) -- but unfortunately that's in step with many agencies. I've been hit for 10% of total charge to 100% on top of what I earn. Some places have the wisdom tht if you're not charging enough, and it would look bad to the client that your fee is too low, they will adjust their fee accordingly and pocket the difference. It would be nice if they told you, but their logic is "you got what you asked for; so why complain?"

It pays to know the market you're in.

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Old 11-05-02, 04:20 PM   #4
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[quote]Originally posted by Rich Potter:
<strong>It makes sense that they wouldn't give one single percentage set in stone (...)Some places have the wisdom tht if you're not charging enough, and it would look bad to the client that your fee is too low, they will adjust their fee accordingly and pocket the difference. It would be nice if they told you, but their logic is "you got what you asked for; so why complain?"</strong><hr></blockquote>

That's what I mean: it only makes sense for the agent, the performer can be pretty sure to get less than what would be possible. I don't like working on a base like this, for two more reasons. First, if an agent charges far more for my act than what I do myself, chances are that the client simply has to pay too much for what they get and then I will get the blame for being an "expensive artist". The client may spread the word and ruin opportunities.
Second, I like to work on a base of honesty, in a healthy relationship where both parties benefit in a fair way from the relation. If an agent can ask whatever fee they like, it's far from that and it may even leave me with that bad feeling of being "exploited" somehow. That's not why I choose to become independent.

[ 11-05-2002: Message edited by: Pyromancer ]</p>
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Old 11-07-02, 09:09 PM   #5
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Personally I think that contract was crap. I like nice concise contracts that clearly specify the Who, what, when, where, why and how much. Having to wade through 4 pages of legal mumble jumble - is inefficient and unreasonable - you really want your client reading through that?

I've encountered a nice contract that I recieved from a musical act from the Toronto Musicians Associations. I might just scan it in for everyone to pilfer/enjoy using.

As an agent and performer - responding to agents/performers and markups... The only advice I can offer is be happy with what you are charging for a show. If you are happy with the rate you are charging the agent, and that you will do your best work for that rate - then there shouldn't be any issue with markups and qualities of show. If the agent knows what he's doing he won't book a $500 act into a $1500 show (well not if he's DECENT ethical person, who respects both the client and the performer, and want's repeat business.)

Pyromancer, if you ever feel as though you're being exploited by an agent ask them how much they are charging for the show you are working for them. Some agencies (only a few) are open book - they will show you the paperwork behind each gig. Others aren't but do have to maintain a higher markup to meet costs (ie 35%). The agent may tell you what they are making on the show %wise, or maybe not. At the very least you'll learn something about who you're dealing with.

Also keep in mind that an agent will get you gigs that you otherwise wouldn't have gotten, and that all the paperwork is done (aside from an invoice to the agent.)

Anyhow there's my 2 cents (+15%)

Check out my NEWLY UPDATED agency website at www.orbitalent.ca

[ 11-07-2002: Message edited by: Brian R Wilson ]</p>
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Old 11-08-02, 04:31 AM   #6
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Thanks Brian.

For the record: I have never felt taken advantage of by an agent, I am coutious and always ask for the details. With one of the agents I currently work with, I get to hear what they get as well - I actually get a copy of the contracts they sign with the clients.
I am also very aware of the benefits of accessing the network of an agent and am willing to pay for it. And indeed, my main concern is with how much I am happy and then I try to stop thinking. Sometimes you happen to get less than an (equal) fellow performer for a gig, sometimes the other way around. That doesn't bother me too much, it's just a matter of negotiation skills and knowing what you can ask.
But I did hear some true horror stories about agents ripping people up, one of then involving exactly the same amounts as you describe, but then tenfold. The client paid 15.000 for a show that was normally sold for 5.000. It ruined the reputation of the artist, at least for a bit, since the client wasn't at all satisfied - that's how he found out, actually.

But again: most of the times I am happy with what I negotiate...
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Old 11-08-02, 06:20 AM   #7
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It seems that you have a good rapport with agents based on your previous posts.

If you're not entirely sure that you're happy with your rate, here's some tips onto charging more. Ask the client LOTS of questions, it's good to get a good feel of what the event is, where it's happening, how many people, who they are, etc. The better a feel you have for the event, the more accurately you can guess the clients budget. Then you can always ask them "what kind of budget are you working with.??" I've always felt this to be a bit gutsy, but as an agent there is nothing more frustrating than a corporate client that wants entertainment and doesn't know hoe much they want to spend. I propose stuff to them then they cut it up with the excuse "not enough money."

In order to ease the booking question I've drafted up call sheets (full page sheets with all the appropriate words an spaces. Once I have the sheet pretty much filled out (which I usually do on the phone with a client) I will have a good sense of what price range their show will fall into.

You have a very specific, and unique skill set/show. It was great having caught it in Halifax. Don't sell yourself short $wise. As the great Dan Holzman says "If you double your rates and work half as much, so what?!"

In TO a bunch of performers banded together and started charging $1000 a fire blast, per blast on a corporate level. Since everyone was charging the same rate, it has worked out very well for a few fire spitting individuals. Your show would possibly mess that up! (how many blasts do you do per show [img]wink.gif[/img] )

Cheers

[ 11-08-2002: Message edited by: Brian R Wilson ]</p>
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Old 11-09-02, 12:55 PM   #8
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Thanks Brian, for your information - and the compliments. And I won't ask too little for a show in a corporate environment, but I won't charge too much either. If you'd really work half as much if you ask twice as much it would be no problem, but there is that balance that you have to find. You might not work at all anymore...

Charging the client per flame seems a very weird concept to me. It's good to 'unite' as performers, but I doubt if I'd ever join a union like this. Not only would it make my show more expensive than a slick sportscar, I also think it puts the wager at the wrong end.
Just puffing out a flame is not that difficult at all and can be relatively easily learned. All that matters is *how* you work with the flame and *what* you do with it and how good your technique actually is. Believe it or not, but even watching fire can get boring after a while.
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Old 11-10-02, 09:02 AM   #9
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Agreed,

Unions just wouldnt work for people who do what we do. Unless a union was offering benefits, insurance, dental, medical, etc. In talking with Eli from Zero Gravity Circus we all agreed that the best realtionship would be some sort of brotherhood, where we all coordinate and not underbid each others' shows, work for better rates, etc. This philosophy seems to have worked in the $ per fire spit case.

Great conversation we're having on here...
Cheers,
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Old 11-11-02, 07:05 AM   #10
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this is a copy of a contract that blew me away, the most performer friendly contract I've had in a while!


NOTES 1. In the event of the artist being prevented from presenting part or all of his act or all performances due to inclement weather conditions or other circumstances beyond the artist’s control, the fee mentioned above shall nethertheless be payable. (Subject to the artist arriving at the venue or the Management advising cancellation.)

2. This document is issued as written confirmation of a verbal agreement already made. Non-
signature is not sufficient to cancel the agreement. Any objection must be in writing and delivered to
the above address within 7 days. Neither party can hold the agency responsible for non-fulfilment of this contract.
3. The Management should provide adequate parking, changing and storage facilities for the artist.

4. The Artist should provide clean presentable costume for the event and behave in a professional manner at all times.

5. The Artist should be covered by public liability insurance, and is responsible for his own tax and National Insurance payments.

6. Should there be the likelihood of any delay reaching the venue, it is the Artist’s responsibility to notify either the client or the agency as soon as possible.
7. If the Management for any reason whatsoever cancel this agreement, then the following cancellation charges will apply: -
a) Cancellation 4 or more weeks prior to the event 50% fee payable.
b) Cancellation 2 -4 weeks prior to the event 75% fee payable.
c) Cancellation less than 2 weeks prior to the event 100% fee payable.

8. The artist shall not exchange or inquire of contact details with clients or persons attending the event under any circumstances.

WE THE UNDERSIGNED ACKNOWLEDGE THAT WE HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD THE TERMS STATED ABOVE AND AGREE THAT THEY WILL BE ADHERED TO.
Signed on behalf of Management/Artist…………………………………………………………
Name ………………………………………………………….
Date …………………………………………………………

pity all agents aren't the same as this one , that contract at the start of this topic , is just the usual bullshit baffels brains that I hate. rip off the performer & client, make as much as you can for your agency, the way I try to work now , unless It's corporate, is that I pick up the fee & send on the commision to the agent,that way you see what is being charge all in.

[ 11-11-2002: Message edited by: Gman ]</p>
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Old 11-12-02, 05:36 AM   #11
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I take it this is the bottom half of the contract? There's no Who, What, When, Where...

More soon,
Bri
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