A musician performs music for the enjoyment of an audience.

Job description

Musicians perform music live on-stage or in recording studios. Their music is used in a variety of media areas such as TV, radio and film. They can play one or more musical instrument to an exceptionally high standard and perform as a soloist or a member of a band or orchestra. Many musicians specialise in a particular musical genre. Opportunities can be full-time, part-time or on a freelance basis and are very much dependent on the musician’s skills and abilities due to the competitive nature of the industry.

Work activities

  • Attending regular rehearsals to prepare for performances and generate ideas for new musical pieces.
  • Performing in concerts and recording in studios.
  • Taking care of instruments; setting up and tuning ahead of performances.
  • Undertaking administrative tasks in terms of fees and publicity.
  • Maintaining and extending a network of venues.

Work conditions

Travel: travel is involved as musicians are required to tour regularly. International travel may feature.
Working hours: are generally long and unsociable; rehearsals take up the day while performances take place in the evenings, including weekends.
Location: mainly in larger cities throughout Ireland. Short-term contracts may require frequent relocation.

Entry requirements

Most professional musicians have years of formal training and experience in performing. Many classical performers are educated at prestigious conservatoires such as the Royal Irish Academy of Music. A music qualification will extend knowledge of musical theory and performance. Experience of playing in a variety of groups and settings is vital for building up contacts.