Artist Payments
Artist Payments

Artist Payments

As an Artist, will I get paid?

Firstly, it depends on the venue.

Some venues pay BMS and the Artists regardless of the money taken on the door. In this case, we communicate the amount to the artists prior to the show. You are probably required to bring an invoice to receive your payment.

At venues where BMS has to rent the venue and manage the door, if we make a profit on the night we pay the artists, else we don’t.

When we manage the door, how does Berlin Modular Society split the door money we take?


Assuming the venue is reasonably full (thus we make at least some profit):

If you are a Solo Act playing a 30 min set, your Act will get about 33 Euros If you are a Duo Act playing a 30 min set, your Act will get about 53 Euros If you are a Solo Act playing a 60 min set, your Act will get about 46 Euros If you are a Duo Act playing a 60 min set, your Act will get about 73 Euros

A longer answer:

Firstly, we calculate the profit for the night, which is ticket sales minus costs for the venue rental, the door staff, tech people and flyers for the night.

The profit is split into artists payment pool (60%) and BMS pool (40%). The money from the BMS pool is used to further develop the Berlin Modular Society network, events and look for funding a develop other revenue streams.

How is the artist’s pool distributed?

True to the philosophy behind the Spectrum series of events, we have a range of Acts performing: Some are solo artists, some are duos or trios etc. Some are performing 30 min sets, some are performing for an hour or longer. Some acts are accompanied by a live visual artist, some rely on the house lights, some screen their own visuals.

When deciding how to split the artist’s pool amongst the artists, we considered the following factors:

  1. Whether you play 30 mins or 90 mins, everyone spends effort getting to the venue, setting up, tearing down and getting home.
  2. We want to value shorter sets as well as longer sets. Shorter sets tend to be from newer or more experimental artists or sometimes a short set is just right for the work it is - and they are good for variety.
  3. Longer sets let everyone get into the groove and are efficient in terms of organisation.
  4. We recognise that solo acts have to carry the audience by themselves.
  5. We want to value each human on stage and recognise that interaction between performers is engaging.
  6. We recognise that live visuals can be an important part of each act's set but they are not standalone BMS acts in themselves.

Taking the above considerations into account, we came to a formula in which:

  • An act that plays an hour gets a bit more than an act playing a 30 min set, but not double.
  • A duo act gets a bit more than a solo act but not double.
  • We encourage musical artists to decide if they want to collaborate with visual artists in advance and suggest the act pays a share of their act fee to the visual artist.

You can see the spreadsheet we currently use for the calculation here.

This may well change as we evolve and we welcome your comments.

This page was last updated on 2nd October 2023