[Callers] Caller Fees

Cynthia Phinney online at starleft.org
Sun Jun 19 16:52:00 PDT 2011

At our series (a small local dance in rural Maine), we divide the door up
into one share each for band members, caller, and sound (sound gets one
share) for bands of five people or less. Once the bands get over five
people, the caller gets a larger share. 

My experience of being both a caller AND a musician, is that calling is
significantly more work than playing. I also find that it is more work,
usually, to call for a large band than a small one. Communication is more
challenging, and there is usually more doodling and chatting in the
background from the band. Plus - for us - some of our larger bands are
students and so the music isn't perfectly honed for dancers, which means
that the caller is needed even more to help keep the dancers on the phrase
since it isn't so crisply defined by the musicians (our dance also has a
significant percentage of inexperienced dancers).


-----Original Message-----
From: callers-bounces at sharedweight.net
[mailto:callers-bounces at sharedweight.net] On Behalf Of Dan Pearl
Sent: Sunday, June 19, 2011 12:50 PM
To: callers at sharedweight.net
Subject: Re: [Callers] Caller Fees


I chair the Thursday Night Dance Committee of NEFFA, which runs a weekly
at the Concord Scout House, in Massachusetts. I would characterize our pay
good. Here are the basics:

1. We expect equal shares for all performers (musicians/callers).  In only
unusual circumstances will we pay different amounts.
2. Guarantee (per performer) is dependent on # of performers. 3 => $155; 4
$145; 5 => $125; 6 => $104; 7 => $89.
3. Performers who travel a distance (say over 1 hour) to get to the dance
$15 extra.
4. Bonus *is* dependent on attendance. We assume that if people came out in 
droves to dance, the performers probably had something to do with it, and
should be rewarded.  For a well-attended night, it is not unusual for
to make around $200 each. For an exceptionally well-attended night, they
make $300 each.
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