Music Professionals write, arrange, orchestrate, conduct and perform musical compositions.

A skill level equal to a Bachelor Degree or higher, or at least 5 years of relevant experience is usually needed. High levels of creative talent or personal commitment and interest are also important.

Tasks

  • creating melodic, harmonic and rhythmic structures to express ideas and emotions in musical form
  • translating ideas and concepts into standard musical signs and symbols for reproduction and performance
  • undertaking research and liaising with clients when composing musical backing for television commercials, popular recordings, and radio, television and film productions
  • auditioning and selecting musicians and Singers
  • selecting music for performances and assigning instrumental parts to musicians
  • directing musical groups at rehearsals and performances to achieve desired effects such as tonal and harmonic balance, rhythm and tempo
  • studying and rehearsing repertoire and musical scores prior to performances
  • playing music in recital, as an accompanist, or as a member of an orchestra, band or other musical group, from score and by memory
  • performing music and songs according to interpretation, direction and style of presentation, using highly developed aural skills to reproduce music

Job Titles

  • Composer
  • Music Director
  • Musician (Instrumental), or Instrumentalist
  • Singer or Vocalist
  • Oher Music Professionals
  • Composer

    Writes new and rearranges existing musical compositions such as songs, operas, symphonies, musical scores and advertising jingles.

    Specialisations: Music Arranger, Songwriter

  • Music Director

    Conducts choirs, orchestras, bands, ensembles, opera companies and musical performances.

    Specialisations: Band Leader, Choral Director, Orchestra Conductor

  • Musician (Instrumental), or Instrumentalist

    Entertains by playing one or more musical instruments.

    Specialisations: Drummer, Guitarist, Pianist, Violinist

  • Singer or Vocalist

    Entertains by singing songs.

    Specialisations: Band Singer, Chorister, Commercial Singer (Advertising), Jazz Singer, Opera Singer, Pop Singer, Rock Singer

  • Oher Music Professionals

    Includes Music Copyist, Music Researcher, Musicologist

Fast Facts

  • Unavailable Weekly Pay
  • 12,400 workers Employment Size
  • Stable Future Growth
  • Very high skill Skill level rating
  • Higher unemployment Unemployment
  • 44.8% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 39 hours Average full-time
  • 44 years Average age
  • 37.6% female Gender Share

The number of Music Professionals grew moderately the past 5 years and is expected to stay about the same over the next 5 years:
from 12,400 in 2018 to 12,300 by 2023.
Job openings can come from new jobs being created, but most come from turnover (workers leaving).
There are likely to be around 8,000 job openings over 5 years (that's about 1,600 a year).

  • Size: This is a small occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was above average in 2017.
  • Location: Music Professionals work in many regions of Australia. Many work in New South Wales or Queensland.
  • Industries: Most work in Arts and Recreation Services; Education and Training; and Information Media and Telecommunications.
  • Full-time: Less than half work full-time (44.8%, fewer than the all jobs average of 68.4%), showing there are many opportunities to work part-time.
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 39.0 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 44 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 37.6% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2018 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2023.
YearNumber of Workers
200812700
200913400
201010100
20119600
201210500
201311800
201411300
20159900
201610200
20178400
201812400
202312300

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Arts and Recreation Services84.3
Education and Training9.3
Information Media and Telecommunications4.8
Public Administration and Safety0.9
Other Industries0.7

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateMusic ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
NSW49.631.6
VIC17.926.2
QLD24.819.7
SA1.66.7
WA1.510.8
TAS2.92.0
NT1.11.1
ACT0.61.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketMusic ProfessionalsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-193.1-5.25.2
20-247.6-9.99.9
25-3428.1-23.623.6
35-4416.3-21.721.7
45-5428.9-20.820.8
55-597.3-8.88.8
60-643.3-6.06.0
65 and Over5.4-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationMusic ProfessionalsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate15.4-8.68.6
Bachelor degree43.6-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma0-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV15.4-18.918.9
Year 1225.6-18.718.7
Years 11 & 100-17.717.7
Below Year 100-8.18.1

A skill level equal to a Bachelor Degree or higher, or at least 5 years of relevant experience is usually needed. High levels of creative talent or personal commitment and interest are also important.

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Creative Arts and Culture VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Music Professionals who have strong interpersonal skills, can communicate well with diverse audiences and work independently.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Fine Arts

    93% Important

    Compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

  2. English Language

    65% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  3. Education and Training

    55% Important

    Teaching and course design.

  4. Customer and Personal Service

    52% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  5. Foreign Language

    51% Important

    Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 27-2042.02 - Musicians, Instrumental.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  1. Performing for or Working Directly with the Public

    90% Important

    Performing for, or speaking with, the public. This includes speaking on television, serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

  2. Building Good Relationships

    81% Important

    Building and keeping constructive and cooperative working relationships with others.

  3. Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events

    81% Important

    Comparing objects, actions, or events, looking for differences between them or changes over time.

  4. Processing Information

    79% Important

    Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.

  5. Making Decisions and Solving Problems

    78% Important

    Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 27-2042.02 - Musicians, Instrumental.

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