Over the last few years I have done lots of really fun house concerts, both in the UK and Europe as well as the USA. I enjoy the intimate performance environment and meeting new friends. So many people have asked how to put a house concert on that I have drafted this little overview of how it all works…
If you would like an exclusive ILONA performance, just read below and get in touch !
How do I host a House Concert?
It’s really easy, in brief – you just need some good friends, a largish indoor space, lots of chairs, bean bags and cushions, some space for BYO snacks/drinks (plus anything you may like to cook for the evening) and the ‘Merch Booth’.
If you have a decent sized living room that can snugly seat, beanbag, couch or laze 15+ people then you have all you need to host a fantastic night of music.
Also, hosts usually accommodate the musicians overnight (or arrange somewhere for them to stay with other friends if space is an issue)
What about sound equipment?
You won’t need to hire a PA system or amplification, as we will provide whatever amplification may be needed. This means that the room must be arranged so your guests can enjoy the concert space as you would a small “theatrette” with full attention and few distractions.
But won’t everyone be drinking and talking?
Bear in mind that these performances are ‘house concerts’ not ‘house parties’. This is an important distinction. House concerts often turn into parties when the show is finished, but the actual concert is attended with the same intention that would be had when going to a theatre.
Can kids come?
Kids are most welcome, but consider that they may need something to keep them occupied while you are focussed on the music.
What happens before and after the concert?
Hosts should organise another space or large kitchen where guests can put their BYO snacks/treats/drinks and chat with the musicians during the course of the evening.
Hosts also need to have another table or suitable space available where the artists can lay out their CD’s and any other merchandise for sale: The Merch Booth! Please let your guests know that artists will be selling their CD’s at your show.
How does the evening run?
This is flexible and up to the discretion and convenience of the host, but a typical house concert opens it’s ‘doors’ for friends and fans at say 7pm, when people arrive with their BYO, mingle, munch and drink with the artists and get comfy in the performance space.
There are usually 2 sets of music, each running for about 35-45 minutes. During the intermission and after the show everyone gets to enjoy the musical company of friends and strangers as well as time with the host and artists.
How much will it cost?
This is generally made up of donations from guests usually between £5-10 but people can be as generous as they wish. These nights are very much in the spirit of the “soiree’s” of yesteryear when musicians performed in intimate home surroundings under the patronage of members of society who wished to support and share great art and performance.
A house concert is a fantastic way to strengthen family, friend and community ties through music. When embraced in the spirit of supporting touring independent artists and original music such events make for an extraordinary and unforgettable evening.
Afterwards, people often come up to me and ask “how do we throw a house concert for next time you tour?” and there seeds the beginnings of the grass-roots network of touring musicians, hosts and music lovers that we call the house concert circuit.
If you would like to book ILONA and her musicians (anything from duo to 5 piece depending on what you would like and/or what the lineup is for the tour) then write to
We look forward to seeing you soon