Half of UK musicians are sexually harassed

Half of UK musicians are sexually harassed


norman lebrecht

October 23, 2019

A Musicians Union survey of 724 members found that 48% said they suffered sexual harassment at work.

Of these, 85% did not report it.

More here.



  • mary says:

    “of 724 members… 48% said they suffered”

    If of 724 members, 48% are women, then we are really talking about a pandemic that affects 100%, or at the very least overwhelmingly, women.

    And if all the harassers are men…

    Non-gender-specific statistics hide brutal realities.

    • C Porumbescu says:

      Extremely unlikely that this is the case – anyone who has worked in the business will have encountered predatory and abusive women in positions of power; and these cases are almost never reported or taken seriously. I’m aware of at least one young male musician who was sexually assaulted by a female colleague, and of a gay man at a UK orchestra systematically bullied out of his role by a group of female colleagues.

      Reality is brutal, yes, but it’s not simple. It certainly doesn’t fall into the easy binaries of conventional wisdom. All abuses of power are reprehensible and should be exposed and punished.

      • Sue Sonata Form says:

        Australia is seeking extradition from Israel of a predatory female school principal who is accused of 72 cases of assault.

        Avert your eyes; only men are toxic and bad!!

  • Karl says:

    The definition of harassment has expanded so much that anyone can claim to be a victim. Just touching someone on the shoulder is considered harassment now. It’s the rise of victimhood culture. I hope it ends soon. Heil Trump!

    • mary says:

      Why are you touching coworkers on the shoulder, male or female, young or old?

      Do you go around touching people’s shoulders in the subway, on the bus, on the street? You get your teeth knocked out.

      What makes you think it’s alright just because you’re working with them?

      It’s not a lockerroom.

    • Claudio says:

      Spoken like the misogynist and abuse apologist we’ve come to expect, Karl.

      • Sue Sonata Form says:

        Sticks and stones….

        • Claudio says:

          It’s not name calling if it’s true. Victim blaming, misogyny, abuse apology and a general hatefulness… those are attitudes that we’ve come to expect from Karl, and from you too, Sue Sonata Form. If you guys proudly express those opinions don’t be surprised that you are then called out for what you are.

    • Barry Guerrero says:

      “Heil Trump!” . . . thank you for showing your true colors. No one could accuse you of having a hidden agenda.

      • Karl says:

        I have been turning more and more orange every day. PC and victimhood culture must go. If you no anyone less PC than Trump let me know. ..

        Actually there is a guy who was Maine governor named Paul LaPage. You know him?

    • Saxon Broken says:

      Karl writes: “Just touching someone on the shoulder is considered harassment now.”

      Er…no it isn’t. It is only abuse if you touch them in a way that makes them feel uncomfortable. Or you touch them when you know they don’t want you to.

  • christopher storey says:

    Oh boy ! If only I could have found a woman who would make overtures to me !

  • Psychiatrist says:

    This isn’t the first time that a report on sexual abuse and harassment in the music world has been accompanied by an advertisement which appears to be of a sexual nature. Is this even remotely appropriate??

    • norman lebrecht says:

      what was the advertisement?

      • Psychiatrist says:

        Something to do with improving male performance but not of the musical variety.

        • norman lebrecht says:

          These are absolutely not part of our ad portfolio. You must have been hacked by an outside source. If you message me the product name we will try to trace the origin.

          • Brettermeier says:

            “These are absolutely not part of our ad portfolio.”

            A great. The only reason I ordered a dozen boxes of Dong Master eXXXtra was that I assumed you endorsed them. 😀

            “You must have been hacked by an outside source.”

            Unlikely. While I’ve seen that, it’s much more likely “just” some “potentially unwanted application”. And that’s always a “self hack”. 😉

            @Psychiatrist: Run Malwarebytes or sth. similar.

    • Nik says:

      The adverts are determined by your browsing history.

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      The world is chocked to the brim with staggering hypocrisy.

    • Antonio says:

      Psychiatrist – the advertisements on this website are served by Google Ads. That means that they are based on your browsing history. The content of those advertisements has nothing to do with “external IPs”, hackers or outside sources.

      When you visit pages or do searches on Google, your web browser saves cookies from those sites/searches on your computer’s hard drive. Google Ads simply shows you advertisements based on the interests it deducts from those cookies on your computer.

      If you don’t want to see those kind of advertisements again, I would recommend you use a private browser or disable cookies the next time you do a search for male performance products 🙂

      • Brettermeier says:

        “The content of those advertisements has nothing to do with “external IPs””

        You are wrong about that. Please refrain from giving advise if you don’t know what you are talking about.

        ” would recommend you use a private browser or disable cookies”

        Ugh. That’s what I meant with “you don’t know what you are talking about”:

        Computer 1 searches for whatever, Computer 2 uses “private browsing mode” (no VPN!). Computer 1 and 2 will get in the same ad pool. (If they share the same external IP, i.e., they are connected to the same router.)

  • Marc says:

    Yes, until is specified what ‘harassment’ means (maybe it is if one clicks through to whatever is linked to; maybe it isn’t) this reported statistic isn’t going to keep me awake tonight. The sentence, ‘more than two thirds of victims feared reporting how they were treated for fear of consequences in their careers, according to the research’, that begins the article doesn’t cause me to suspect that we’ll be given much specificity. We live in an era when ‘mistreatment’ can mean anything from what I would describe as actual harassment to ‘close-talking’.

  • Sue Sonata Form says:

    Poor little diddums.

  • Maria says:

    Here we go again …

  • Blair Tindall says:

    Ooooooh, breaking news!