Rider (theater)

Rider (theater)

In theater (and musical performance), a rider is a set of requests or demands that a performer will set as criteria for performance.

Hospitality Rider

The hospitality rider is a list of requests for the comfort of the artist on the day of the show. Sometimes this document is provided along with the technical rider; other times, it is provided much closer to the performance date.Some common requests are:
*Specific foods
*Particular beverages (sometimes alcoholic)
*Transportation and hotels
*A runner (soundproofing carpet)
*A number of 'comp. tickets' or guest lists (free tickets for friends and family)
*Security and/or locking rooms.

Technical Rider

A document which is sometimes separate is provided in advance for a show, defining the types of equipment to be used, the staff to be provided, and various business arrangements.

Typical requests are:

*PA system, generally terms such as 'a professional quality 3 or 4 way active system', frequency response (e.g., 20 Hz-22 kHz) and power (either in wattage or dB SPL) are also common.
*Sound desk - it is normal for engineers to specify a list of preferred desks and also minimum requirements (such as number of channels) from other desks as a back up. Requests for recording equipment or feeds for recording are sometimes included here.
*Outboard - the number and quality of gates, compressors and effects units required.
*Channel/input list - a list of the instruments being used, including preferred microphones and inserts.
*Monitor requirements - often included alongside the channel list, detailing the number of wedges and mixes required, a section similar to the front of house requirements detailing the need for monitor desk, graphic EQs and other outboard. If a monitor engineer is to be provided by the house it is generally requested here.
*If large amounts of equipment are being toured in (such as the PA system) then power requirements are likely to be stated here.

*Depending on the size of the production this can vary between 'provide a front wash and x kW of back lighting' to specific lighting plots of equipment the venue should provide (along with house lighting technicians) to power requirements and truss weightings when the entire lighting system is provided by the touring production.

*Some bands will not tour full backline due to the expense of transport (generally if playing a few in-house produced gigs in each country/area) and may have the venue provide some to all of it. Larger items like amps, cabs and drums are more likely to be requested than guitars which many musicians treat more personally.
*Risers - a riser is a raised area of stage, the size and positioning of risers for musicians (such as drum risers) are specified here.

*Crew - productions will specify the amount of local crew the venue should provide as well as any techs.

Notable rider requests

*Van Halen requested in the technical rider that a bowl of M&Ms be provided in their dressing room with the brown ones removed (failure to do so would mean that the band would not perform, but the venue would still have to pay the full fee). The objective of this was to determine how much attention to detail the crew at a local venue paid to the requests specified in the rider. Should the bowl be absent, or if brown M&Ms were present, it would give band members reason to suspect other, legitimate, technical and safety issues were also being performed poorly or were outright overlooked. David Lee Roth stated in his autobiography that this request was done as a result of faulty workmanship at a venue on an earlier tour which nearly cost the life of a member of Van Halen's road crew, as well as $85,000 damage to the venue and their own equipment. [http://www.snopes.com/music/artists/vanhalen.htm]
*Eric Clapton's rider required a space for his foosball table. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/ericclapton/ericclapton1.html TSG Backstage: Eric Clapton ] ]
*Frank Sinatra's rider included an ear, nose, and throat specialist with Decadron as well as an assortment of alcohol. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/franksinatra/franksinatra1.html TSG Backstage: Frank Sinatra ] ]
*Johnny Cash required an American flag on stage. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/johnnycash/johnnycash2.html TSG Backstage: Johnny Cash ] ]
*Paul McCartney requested a sweep of the venue by bomb-sniffing dogs before the show. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/mccartney/mccartney2.html TSG Backstage: Paul McCartney ] ]
*Elton John requires that his dressing room be kept at "60 °F in summer and 70 °F in winter." [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/elton/elton2.html TSG Backstage: Elton John ] ]
*Razorlight request a plate of corn bread and an assortment of NME magazines that include themselves. [ [http://razorlight.co.uk/ Razorlight ] ]
*Jimmy Buffett has the option of refusing to perform if any door is opened to the auditorium during his soundcheck. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/jimmybuffett/jimmy_buffett_1.html TSG Backstage: Jimmy Buffett ] ]
*Iggy Pop's entire rider was written by Jos Grain, his roadie, in a humorous style that included foolish suggestions for reality television shows, running commentary on past events, and wordplay involving the requests made. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/iggypop/iggypop1.html TSG Backstage: Iggy Pop ] ]
*Bruce Springsteen has the venue caterers prepare finger food for his children, and his saxophone player Clarence Clemons has an entire roasted chicken sent to his dressing room halfway through the performance. [ [http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/bruce/bruce1.html TSG Backstage: Bruce Springsteen ] ]


External links

* http://www.thesmokinggun.com/backstagetour/index.html A list of original concert riders.

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