Frequently Asked Questions
What is a string quartet?
A string quartet consists of 4 acoustic string instruments: 2 violins, viola and cello. This gives a very versatile range of two upper ‘voices’, one middle ‘voice’ and a bass ‘voice’ which enables us to play almost any piece of music, from classical to pop.
What is a string trio?
A string trio consists of 2 violins and a cello. It would be suitable for a more intimate function, where space might be limited or for smaller budgets.
What is the difference between the quartet and trio?
The quartet has one extra player so it can create a greater volume and a richer sound. It is worth noting that we have a more extensive repertoire for the quartet.
Will the music be too loud/quiet for our function?
The quartet is well suited for background music. For functions with guest numbers exceeding 200 people amplification may be required. Please contact us if you should need to discuss this further.
How long will you play for?
Our minimum booking is for 1 hour, after that you can book us for as long as you wish. For a wedding ceremony we usually allow 1 hour, for a drinks reception 1.5hrs and for formal dinners 2 hrs.
Will you need to take a break?
We normally require a short break (15 mins) for bookings of 2.5hrs and at least 30 minutes is required if we play for 3-4 hours. We always endeavour to time any breaks to fit in with the running of an event.
What areas do you cover?
We are based in the West Midlands but regularly take bookings for weddings and events in Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Shropshire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Cheshire, South Yorkshire, West and South Lincolnshire. Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Herefordshire. We are also willing to travel to London and the surrounding areas and have performed as far a field as Scotland, Ireland, Jersey and Italy, so it is always worth checking with us.
Are you willing to travel to more than one venue?
If you would like us to play at both your wedding ceremony and reception but they are in different locations this is not a problem, we are happy to travel in between.
What music would be most suitable for our function?
We have a wealth of experience performing at all kinds of events and always ensure that we work closely with our clients to find the right music. With our vast and varied repertoire we feel we can enhance any atmosphere you wish to create.
What if I want a piece of music that you don't have?
If you have a specific song or piece of music in mind that isn’t currently in our repertoire we will try to find it. We are happy to arrange specific pieces but this may incur an extra fee.
What should be provided for the quartet on the day?
We need 4 armless chairs on a flat surface with enough space (ideally 2.5m x 2m) and illumination to play comfortably. If we will be playing outside (temperature permitting) then please ensure that adequate shade is available if sunny and similarly shelter if windy or rainy, this requirement is mostly to protect our instruments rather than ourselves.
For bookings over 2.5hrs we would be grateful for refreshments ie tea and sandwiches, otherwise just water is required.
How much does it cost to book the quartet/trio?
We start at £440 (quartet) /£340 (trio) for 1 hour. Please contact us for more information, to enable us to give an accurate quote please provide venue, date and timings.
Are there any additional expenses?
Possibly, for venues more than 1 hr drive from Birmingham there may be travel expenses ie 1 hr drive £30. We do not charge VAT.
How do we book?
You can get in touch with us via our contact page, please fill in the enquiry form with as much detail as possible, you will then be provided with a booking form. Once you have returned the signed booking form with a non-refundable deposit of £100 your booking will be confirmed.
What happens if the event is running late?
We understand that sometimes due to unforseen circumstances delays can occur. We will always try to be accommodating, provided that no members of the quartet have any external obligations to fulfill. This would be discussed on the day and a mutual agreement reached.
Can we extend our booking on the day if required?
We will always endeavour to meet your requirements, and provided there are no external commitments any member of the quartet needs to fulfill, then we would be happy to negotiate further playing time on the day.
What is the quartet’s attire?
We dress in smart black clothes. For more formal occasions we can wear long black evening dresses if required. We also have matching designer coloured dresses and formal Indian attire for Asian events.
How far in advance should we book?
The sooner you book the better as you then secure your date. The quartet has bookings up to 2 years in advance! We do however get last minute enquiries. It’s always worth checking as we may still be free. If not we will try to put you in contact with other highly recommended groups.
Do you have a cancellation policy?
In the unlikely event that you wish to cancel your booking please note that should it be between 28 to 8 days prior to the date of engagement, half of the outstanding balance is to be paid. 7 days or less prior to the date of engagement then the outstanding balance is to be paid in full. Please ensure you have spoken to a member of Enigma String Quartet in person.
What if a member of the string quartet is unavailable on the day?
If an Enigma String Quartet member is unable to attend they will be replaced by a professional musician of equal standard and experience. We have a select pool of trusted musicians that we regularly employ as deputies, if necessary.
Do you have Insurance/Public Liability?
All players are individually insured through the Musicians’ Union or privately for legal liability of up to £10m, to cover injury to members of the public or damage to property.
If you have any further questions please contact us.