In Sweden, 1 in 3 musicians is changing profession

In Sweden, 1 in 3 musicians is changing profession


norman lebrecht

September 04, 2020

A survey of 964 musicians in Sweden shows that one-thord are making plans to change their profession.

Some 49% have not sought financial support from available corona funds.

Around 17% sought funds but did not receive any.

That means two-thirds have gone without any state subsidy.

Full report here.

(That’s Birgit on the banknote.)



  • Ruben Greenberg says:

    What profession can a musician move into if he changes occupations? The ones that I know that have done this have gone into music-related fields: publishing, musical instrument manufacturers, repair work..and these are also dwindling fields.

    • white collar always says:

      Contract killer

    • John Borstlap says:

      I appears that truck drivers are much in demand, because of the increasing number of people ordering online. I’m not joking, I know of people from entirely different professional fields now working on their driving license for these vehicles.

      • Sue Sonata Form says:

        Yes, and it would be good if the heavy vehicles would stop coming up my steep street teaching them hill starts!!

    • K says:

      I know many former colleagues who left the profession and went on to become successful in medicine, business, real estate and computer science, to name a few. Of course this did involve retraining, but none that I know of had any issues learning and applying new skill sets and many have gone on to very lucrative second careers. Not to include yourself necessarily, but most people do not know of, or appreciate, the level of intensity or discipline that goes into becoming and remaining a professional musician. Retooling and moving into another field is often no sweat after being “in the arena”, so to speak.

    • PHF says:

      Well, you have to learn something new, simple like that.

    • Terence says:

      “What profession can a musician move into if he changes occupations?“

      She, or he, can I hope find work suited to her or his abilities.

      I won’t bother making a list but the discipline and dedication shown by musicians is generally valued by employers.

    • engineers_unite says:

      Loads of jobs for unemployed musicians or those that choose alternatives at the same time as doing some music for funerals to fill in
      …Know quite a lot in studios and audio, electronics, even hi class, classic cars*. (Know an excellent singer who does exactly that!)

      All you need is BRAINS, initiative, willingness to work extra hours, all the kinds of things you won’t see in people like A-S M & all many “elite” stars for instance.

      Even Michael Rabin loved tinkering with his cars*.

    • Inga Walburgh says:

      Hopefully these music schools, conservatories and the like will be permanently choked off soon.

      They certainly haven’t produced the level of singers expected to justify their high costs.

      Nobody cares how supposedly “educated” you are when you’re on stage if you can’t wow a paying audience with your technique and prowess no matter your looks.

      Being an opera star today certainly requires less talent considering how low the bar continues to drop. ie Anna Netrebko and Yusuf.. Attractive woman yet riddled with numerous pitch and legato problems (and the horrific issues above the stave…UGH!) anchored by a 3rd rate partner’s voice of agony. Doesn’t really take the dedication and commitment it used to with the shrieking folks accept and forgive now…

  • Dave says:

    Amazon needs warehouse help.

  • A shame for a country so rich

  • mikhado says:

    Pity, I’m not fluent in Swedish.