Participants preferred certain venues for specific reasons. For example, one participant preferred Pinhook because of its sound system, but preferred Motorco because of its large capacity.
Participants advised that we match genre/artist with each venue. Careful consideration must be taken when considering the intended demographic. For example, Jazz may attract a more mature audience who may prefer a seated listening experience in a more intimate setting.
To ensure a Durham-centric festival, participants suggested that we still highlight non-traditional music spaces eg., art galleries.
There was an overall agreement that festival goers would appreciate parking only once, thus much attention should be paid to the walkability of the festival and/or other means of transportation between venues.
Overall participants suggested Motorco, Casbah and Pinhook as the preferred music venues for the Club Pass series. Other notable suggestions were Fullsteam and Whiskey.
In terms of the number of bands per venue, participants generally listed 3 – 5 bands.
Affordable Hassle-Free Ticketing
Participants overwhelmingly agreed that ticket prices should be affordable for everyone while having different pricing levels to accommodate sub groups of music lovers. A few participants were willing to pay to get access to all performances of the music festival, but the majority preferred paying for only portions e.g. 1 day club pass or even club venue event.
For hassle-free ticketing, participants agreed that wristbands should be used and suggested having a central pick-up location that would be open for most of the daily activities. Participants suggested a staggered ticket release system wherein The Art of Cool would release exclusive tickets first i.e. VIP passes and general tickets last. One participant suggested having last minute tickets for club venue events.
For a 1-day Club Pass series, participants were willing to pay anywhere from $25 to $50.
For a 2-day Club Pass, the majority of the participants reported pricing in the $50 – $75 range.
For a single Club venue event, participants were generally willing to pay only $20.
The Headliner series would be a separate ticket from the wristband Club Pass and had a range of $20 to $75, with median price of $45. For both headliner nights, participants were willing to pay in the range of $50 – $100, with a median price of $80.
For All-Access passes, participants were willing to pay up to $140.
The majority of the focus group participants agreed that the Ultimate day party should be free and begin between 12:00 noon and 1:00 pm and end between 4:00 pm and 5:00 pm. This would lead to a start of the Club Pass series between 7:00 pm and 8:00 pm and an end between 12:00 am and 2:00 am. Participants suggested an even later after hours event that would begin after the end of the Club Pass Series (similar to our Post-Concert Jazz Jam Sessions).
For the host of the Ultimate Day party, participants suggested that the person be connected to the audience and community at large. Suggestions given included local college radio hosts.
Participants also suggested that there be a spotlight on emerging artists and a call for talent.