A report published by the Musicians Union revealed that 34% of British musicians are considering abandoning their career in music, while 37% are not sure.
The report detailed that 34% of musicians are considering abandoning the industry completely due to financial hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Results from the latest impact poll revealed that nearly half (47%) of the Musicians Union’s members have already been forced to seek work outside of the industry, with seven in 10 (70%) unable to undertake more than a quarter of their usual work.
With furlough schemes coming to an end, 87% of musicians who were covered by the schemes say they will be facing financial hardship, and a third (33%) didn’t even qualify for any of the support available. As a result, nine in 10 (88%) believe the Government has not done enough to support musicians during the pandemic.
“These figures are devastating and show how many musicians are struggling financially and at real risk of leaving music for good,” commented Horace Trubridge, General Secretary of the MU.
“In better times, our members drive a £5bn music industry with their talent. One artist’s gig will create a domino effect of jobs – from lighting technicians to ticket sellers. If one musician is out of work, you can be sure many others will be affected too.
“We appreciate all the Government has done to support our members through the furlough and self-employment income support schemes so far, but they must not abandon musicians now. With social distancing measures still in place, venues can only sell at around 30% of usual capacity.
“We are calling on the Government to implement a seat-matching scheme, which would take venues’ potential revenue to 60%, providing a lifeline to musicians and the wider industry.
“Getting musicians back to work is the priority. However, this is simply not realistic for so many of our members while social distancing remains in place. We strongly urge the Government to recognise the unique situation that our members are in and to provide sector specific financial support for musicians.”
The MU urges people to contact the UK Government to compel them do more in order to safeguard the future of the UK’s music industry.
You can even use the MU’s template letter if you’re not sure what to say.