A Change Of Focus

Millicent has been part of the Musicians’ Union’s Executive Committee for a few terms now. The current one finishes at the end of December this year, and she has taken the decision not to continue because she successfully got on the NatWest Accelerator programme offered by NatWest Bank, which runs for six months. 

The programme supports and empowers entrepreneurs of the United Kingdom to scale their businesses to the next level. Millicent joined to boost Success Beyond The Score as a whole, but in particular Time For My Music, the online community for emerging female musicians that you can find in this link. 

The NatWest Accelerator sessions run on Wednesdays, which makes them overlap with the monthly sessions of the Musicians’ Union’s Executive Committee. Given that Millicent has already had the opportunity to contribute to the union through that committee for a meaningful and rewarding time, she decided to step down and focus on the NatWest...

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MU: Access Riders for Musicians

 

As musicians, we require that the venues where we play provide us with certain things in order for us to be able to offer our best performances. Some examples are tables to locate our equipment, dressing rooms to get ready after a long ride to the venue, parking space near or in front of the venue with the possibility to offload, ramp access, etc. While some might think those are a given that all venues offer by default, the truth is that many of them do not. This is particularly troublesome for musicians with disabilities. After all, if you require certain accommodations due to a disability, you might be hesitant to try your hand at gigging due to fear of venues ignoring your needs.

First of all, rest assured knowing that all musicians have the same right to perform at public venues, no matter whether they have a disability or not. To ensure that this is a reality, the key is that artists and venue owners communicate in advance to clarify the needs of the show and take...

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You Can Earn From Your Music!

We have the firm belief that every musician should be paid their worth. Even if you do music as a hobby, your effort, dedication, skill and passion deserve recognition. Now, it is easier said than done, right? When it comes to the business side of music, many artists get lost in calculations, transactions, invoices, and the uncertainty of how to communicate fees and conditions to potential clients.

Don't get overwhelmed, though, there is a way out! In the e-course "Maye Your Music Pay", Millicent will teach you how to:

- Set your fee and get paid regularly.
- Build your confidence to say your price without anxiety.
- Negotiate a win-win for your fee.
- Collect your fee with no drama.
- Set up a money management system.
- Prepare for your tax return.
- Grow a fans mailing list.

With this, you'll understand the steps you can take now to work out your gig fee, collect your payment and manage your music money. Sounds good? Click here to watch the introductory video, get more information...

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12 Ways To Reduce Your Money Worries

It's no secret that the cost of living rises have affected everybody.  It may be that you have to cut back on the amount of holidays you take, or figure out how you will make £1 stretch to purchase necessary items.  Well, here are Millicent's 12 tips to help you manage your money worries.  Don't forget to do you due diligence and seek professional advice to see if these will work for you.  

1.  Sell stuff you no longer need!  Maybe you have an extra instrument, or two, or three, or four in the corner gathering dust.  Do you need it?  Could someone else benefit from it?

2. Cut back on ready meals and takeaways, and cook from raw ingredients.  

3. Call in any I.O.Us. 

4. Look through your insurances, utility bills, bank charges and see if you can switch to a provider who is offering a better deal.  Of course, read the small print!

5. Cancel any subscriptions for services you no longer need.

6. Become more...

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New Content For The Podcast 'Success Beyond The Score' Is On Its Way

The podcast Success Beyond The Score is soon to have a new season! The wait has been long but we promise it was worth it. We’ll provide details soon (as soon as the end of this week!), but while the time comes, why don’t you listen to the seasons that are already there?

No matter if it is your first time, or if you have already studied the episodes and benefited from applying what you learned to your career, we believe there’s always something new to take from these capsules of key knowledge of the music industry, provided by decades of experience by Millicent and her guests.

You can listen to the two seasons on the following platforms:

And you can watch the videos of season 2 on YouTube.

Stay tunned!

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‘We Demand Better’ National March and Rally

On Saturday 18th June, the Musicians Union will be joining the trade union movement in London to tell the government that the workers of England demand and deserve better! Members of the union are invited to join, assembling from 10:30 am at Portland Place in Central London. There will also be a rally from 1:00 pm in Westminster Square.

 

These are some of the demands:

  • A real pay rise for every worker – and a real living wage for all
  • Respect and security for all workers – ban zero hours contracts, ban ‘fire and rehire’
  • Demand decent sick pay now
  • End racism at work
  • Tax energy profits to pay our bills
  • Raise universal credit
  • Boost union bargaining rights
  • And more than that: we demand a government that listens and acts to support working people.

 

 Register your interest to join the MU on the March: [email protected]

 Additional information:

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Millicent's Speech For (MU) Motion 20: ‘Being Black In The UK Music Industry’.

This was Millicent's speech to move the (MU) Motion 20: Being Black in the UK Music Industry, delivered at the TUC Black Workers Conference:

Good morning Conference. I am Millicent Stephenson, Musicians’ Union, and I am moving Motion 20, ‘Being Black In The Music Industry’.

Music is important and woven into the fabric of our society. It motivates, soothes, conveys ‘I love you’ and ‘good-byes’. It is a social, physical, spiritual thing which goes through our being. What would life be like without music?

Music is also a professional career choice on par with any other. However, within the music industry there are stratas and issues. One of which is ‘being black in the music industry’.

You may be familiar with Jazz music, songs like ‘Summertime’ and ‘At Last’, but did you know that it came from the black communities of the United States? Also, the root of Jazz is the ‘Blues’, the music of...

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Why You Should Take A Break.

We live in a busy world.  Our phones keep us active, the internet cries for our attention, and then there is the demands of family, friends, work and even our music.  There are not enough hours in the day to get everything done. You might even find you feel stressed.  

There are many tips, videos and blogs on the internet giving advice on how to cope with stress. I learnt the hard way how much my health was affected by working maximum hours with limited sleep, so three years ago I started to realign myself and it’s paying off. One of the things I did was to consciously plan breaks in my day and week.

A break can be a few minutes each day where you mentally come away from work. This could be looking at nature, the sky, having a short sleep, doing something creative, but not music. These things will help your brain, which in this regard is like a muscle, to rest, relax and recover, renewing you to do your next job. 

A break can be moments taken to...

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Consultation on Government’s Plans for Higher Education Music and Arts in England

As the Government plans to limit access to higher education music and the arts in England, the Musicians' Union has put together a guide to the consultation's questions and key points to raise.

There is time until May 6th to take part in the consultation, which will be taken into account when defining the final policy. It is extremely important for people involved with music in the country to voice their opinion and concerns, because access to higher education has a direct and strong impact on the future of the industry, one we can't overlook.

Review the information provided my the MU.

Take part in the consultation.

Please share this with as many people as you can; the more voices and perspectives are taken into account, the best the chances for a good outcome are!

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PiPA Classical Music Survey: Work Life Balance, Diversity and Caring Responsibilities

Help Musicians UK and Musicians Union have helped funding the PiPA (Parents in Performing Arts) Classical Music Survey, which aims to identify patterns in job and working environments in relation to work-life balance, and develop practical strategies and resources for Classical Music organisations to better support parents and carers, and the wider workforce.

You can take the survey clicking here.

The survey was developed in partnership with Association of British Orchestras, Liverpool Philharmonic, SWAP’ra, Black Lives in Music and UK Music. It will investigate the impact of caring responsibilities on career progression as well as wider worklife balance and wellbeing challenges in Classical Music.

The survey will provide data driven insights to enable PiPA to develop a range of strategies and resources for the Classical Music sector to empower organisations to better support parents, carers and the wider workforce.

PiPA wants to hear from people from all backgrounds...

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