Question: How Long Is Each Set?
Answer: We have flexibility.
The industry standard for musicians' breaks is that the band will play 45 minutes of every hour and break for 15 minutes. If this schedule doesn't flow with your event we will do our best to be as flexible as possible.
We try to stay close to the industry standard but as long as we get some breaks in, we can comfortably play a set lasting as long as 90 minutes. At weddings we usually take our longest break when the band eats a meal during speeches, toasts, and blessings. Or we can have our DJ break music playing while we eat. Musicians, particularly horn players, usually need at least 20 minutes for dinner before putting air through their horns again.
The Matt McCallie Orchestra has played as long as a four hour concert without a break. This was not an ideal situation and occurred due to lack of communication from our clients and no schedule of events. Even in an opera or musical the orchestra does not play non-stop for so many hours.
We try to stay close to the industry standard but as long as we get some breaks in, we can comfortably play a set as long as 90 minutes.
Musician's Break Needs:
Musicians have the same physiological needs and limitations as anyone else. Vocalists have to start hydrating several hours before and during a concert to maintain performance ability.
Horn players fatigue faster than most musicians. Their ability to maintain a functional embouchure is like a ticking time bomb until it is gone and it doesn't come back until long after a concert, sometimes taking days to recover.
Musicians will be able to perform closer to their peak abilities over a longer span of time if allowed frequent breaks so they can stretch and relax their muscles and do instrument specific exercises that will help them maintain their abilities.