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

    You need a high level of skill in your chosen musical field to work as a Music Professional. Formal qualifications might be useful but aren't essential. Music Professionals often have university qualifications.

    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

    More about Music Professionals

    All Music Professionals

    All Music Professionals

    • $1,662 Weekly Pay
    • Stable Future Growth
    • Average unemployment Unemployment
    • 12,400 workers Employment Size
    • Very high skill Skill level rating
    • 33% Full-Time Full-Time Share
    • 46 hours Average full-time
    • 40 years Average age
    • 29% female Gender Share

    The number of people working as Music Professionals (in their main job) 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 medium sized occupation.
    • Unemployment: Unemployment was average in 2018.
    • Location: Music Professionals work in many parts of Australia. New South Wales has a large share of workers.
    • Industries: Most work in Arts and Recreation Services; Education and Training; and Accommodation and Food Services.
    • Earnings: Full-time workers on an adult wage earn around $1,662 per week (higher than the average of $1,460). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
    • Full-time: Less than half work full-time (33%, less than the average of 66%), showing there are many opportunities to work part-time.
    • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 46 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
    • Age: The average age is 40 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
    • Gender: 29% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

    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)

    Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours (cat. no. 6306.0), May 2018, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
    EarningsMusic ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
    Full-Time Earnings16621460

    Main Industries

    Main Employing Industries (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
    Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
    Arts and Recreation Services67.6
    Education and Training12.9
    Accommodation and Food Services5.6
    Public Administration and Safety4.5
    Other Industries9.4

    States and Territories

    • NSW

    • VIC

    • QLD

    • SA

    • TAS

    • NT

    • ACT

    Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    StateMusic ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
    NSW38.131.6
    VIC26.225.6
    QLD17.920.0
    SA6.27.0
    WA7.510.8
    TAS2.12.0
    NT0.41.0
    ACT1.61.9

    Age Profile

    Age Profile (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
    Age BracketMusic ProfessionalsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    15-192.9-5.05.0
    20-249.3-9.39.3
    25-3424.8-22.922.9
    35-4423.0-22.022.0
    45-5419.4-21.621.6
    55-597.9-9.09.0
    60-645.8-6.06.0
    65 and Over6.9-4.24.2

    Education Level

    Highest Level of Education (% Share)

    Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). 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 Certificate14.9-10.110.1
    Bachelor degree31.7-21.821.8
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma11.6-11.611.6
    Certificate III/IV7.9-21.121.1
    Year 1223.1-18.118.1
    Year 113.6-4.84.8
    Year 10 and below7.1-12.512.5

    You need a high level of skill in your chosen musical field to work as a Music Professional. Formal qualifications might be useful but aren't essential. Music Professionals often have university qualifications.

    Membership with the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance may be useful.

    Thinking about study or training?

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

    • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
    • 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.

    Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

    Useful links and resources


    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.

    Filter Skills & Knowledge

    Knowledge

    These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

    1. Fine arts

      90% Skill level

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

    2. English language

      49% Skill level

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

    3. Education and training

      46% Skill level

      Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

    4. Customer and personal service

      41% Skill level

      Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

    5. Communications and media

      37% Skill level

      Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and 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.

    Filter Work Environment

    Demands

    The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

    1. Being exact or accurate

      97% Important

      Be very exact or highly accurate.

    2. Competition

      94% Important

      Compete with others, or be aware of competitive pressures.

    3. Teamwork

      93% Important

      Work with people in a group or team.

    4. Using your hands to handle, control, or feel

      91% Important

      Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.

    5. Contact with people

      90% Important

      Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.

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

    go to top