After years operating online due to the conditions of the pandemic, Time For My Music will have a meeting in person! We are very excited to finally see each other in the flesh and share some quality time. In addition, we want to use the occasion to hopefully introduce more emerging female musicians to the community. If you are a woman in music who can attend an event in Birmingham (UK) this Saturday 10th June between 2pm and 4pm, please know we'd be delighted to have you there!
How to know if this event is right for you? Well, if:
We know what you first thought was: Is there someone campaigning in favour of female mediocrity?! What's that supposed to mean?!
In an article posted by the Musicians' Union as part of their guest blogs, Christine Anderson explains her point. This viola player, who's a member of Her Ensemble, as well as an orchestral and chamber musician, shares her experiences and thoughts on women and diversity within the classical music industry in a thought provoking article that starts like this:
The classical music industry is changing. Admittedly, the pace could generously be described as glacial: according to Donne - Women in Music, in the 2021-22 season, across 111 orchestras in 31 countries, just 7.7% of pieces played were by women, of which 5.5% were white (while 27.5% of pieces were by the same ten historical, white European men).
But this is at least a slight improvement on the previous year, where just 5% of compositions were by women. And out with the big, established...
Following intense discussions with the Musicians' Union over several weeks, the BBC announced on March 24th that they will not be closing the BBC Singers on September 30th of this year. While these are positive news, the futures of BBC Singers and the BBC Concert, Philharmonic and Symphony orchestras are still at risk.
In order to protect these musicians, and keep the British music community stable and healthy as consequence, the MU is calling us to write to the BBC with the following suggestions:
If you want to learn more before taking action, or need a template to know how to write your petition, you can find resources on this post by the MU. Consider...
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...
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...
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...
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...
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.
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:
Register your interest to join the MU on the March: [email protected]
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...