Corona advice for musicians
This page has been created to be a central source of support and advice for all musicians during the coronavirus period. We will update regularly as the situation develops.
stay at home
The UK Government has introduced measures requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes.
Please follow the government’s advice for reporting illness, recent travel and self-isolation as appropriate.
If you are feeling unwell
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999.
mental health and wellbeing
Public Health England guidance on looking after your mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak
support for businesses
The Chancellor has set out a package of temporary measures to support businesses across the UK through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19, including SMEs.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Employees or PAYE zero hour contract workers could be entitled to the Job Retention Scheme. Employees placed on temporary leave known as furlough could receive 80% of their wages, up to £2,500 per month.
HMRC Tax Helpline
HMRC’s tax helpline offers advice for businesses and self employed people concerned about their tax payments due to coronavirus. If you’re unable to pay, HMRC can discuss payment plans, suspending debt collection and cancelling penalties and interest when administrative issues arise.
8.00 to 20.00 Mon – Fri, 8.00 to 16.00 Sat, closed Bank Holidays.
A £100m fund with loans from £5,000 to £250,000 for Welsh businesses experiencing cashflow difficulties due to the outbreak.
A £400m emergency pot with grants of up to £10,000 for micro-businesses, including sole traders employing staff. Qualifying businesses can apply from mid-April.
8.30 to 17.30 Mon – Fri
NI Executive offer one-off grants of £10,000 to businesses currently in receipt of Small Business Rate Relief
Advice is also available from:
The UK Government has announced an income support scheme for self employed and freelance workers. From June, if you’re self employed you may be eligible for a taxable grant of up to £2,500 a month.
The Health and Welfare team offers structured support to professional musicians in times of personal crisis. Our approach is person-centred; building tailored support around an individual’s specific needs. Unfortunately, for obvious reasons, Help Musicians is unable to replace lost earnings. But we are able to provide financial support in cases of significant financial hardship as well as signposting for debt or welfare related issues.
PRS For Music, PRS Members’ Fund and PRS Foundation
Help Musicians Coronavirus Financial Hardship Fund
The initial Help Musicians Hardship Fund was launched quickly to provide immediate financial relief to musicians while Government support options were revealed. We have received well in excess of 17,000 applications and are continuing to process them and fundraising in order to pay all that are eligible.
Going forwards we will be taking a multi-layered, targeted approach to hardship over the coming months to help musicians to survive in the short term and support them as they return to work. Over the coming weeks we will roll-out new support initiatives which best suit the needs of those suffering significant hardship. There is more to come.
Do keep in touch with CoronaMusicians.info, our social channels and our website here, to find out about more about our developing hardship support, creative opportunities and wider help and advice.
Various membership organisations operate their own benevolent funds:
Other sources of useful
financial assistance & advice
Debt advice and support
Advice about business related debts
Legal / business advice
Contractual Issues and Income Loss
Working in theatre
Advice in Response to Closure of West End and Regional Theatres
Teaching during the coronavirus outbreak
music education resources
UK Music has created a list of music education resources for home schooling, class teaching and more. From early years teaching to higher education.
ISM legal support
If you are an ISM member, you can contact the in-house legal team via email@example.com. Please include your membership number and supporting documents (contracts, correspondence etc) for review.
ISM offer specific legal advice for members working in the following areas
Eligibility for the self employment income support scheme
Check whether you’re entitled to receive the taxable grant as a self employed musician
UK Music advice to businesses on coronavirus
UK Music has collated advice for music businesses affected by the impact of coronavirus
The Health and Welfare team offers structured support to professional musicians in times of personal crisis. Our approach is person-centred; building tailored support around an individual’s specific needs. We provide financial assistance for health interventions and access to music specialist health assessments for performance related health issues.
BAPAM is a specialist healthcare charity giving medical advice to performing arts professionals and students. Their expert clinicians understand the demands of a performing arts career and can help with problems including work-related injuries and pain, tension, voice problems, hypermobility, performance or career-related anxiety and other psychological issues. BAPAM clinicians are from a range of backgrounds including general practice, physiotherapy, psychology, osteopathy, rheumatology, and orthopaedics.
BAPAM is offering a series of free online training sessions for musicians covering a range of performance health issues.
Click here for details
music minds matter
A free, confidential, around the clock helpline run by Help Musicians for the entire music industry. Whatever you do in music, whatever you’re going through right now, contact Music Minds Matter for a listening ear.
A helpline for anyone in the music industry suffering from alcoholism, addiction, emotional or mental health issues.
A 24 hour helpline for ISM members. Counselling (telephone and face to face) can also be arranged through the support line.
For urgent help and support. Plus advice on how to support others.
Music Industry Therapists & Coaches
Available as a free download from the MITC website.
Other emergency numbers
Every year, Help Musicians give grants, provide opportunities and offer advice to talented musicians.
Help Musicians’ Funding Wizard – a quick way to find opportunities relevant to you.
Do It Differently Covid-19 Round
Adapted round of Help Musicians’ Do It Differently fund, which recognises innovation, creativity and new ways of working during self-isolation.
Arts Council England
A £20m emergency response fund for individual creative practitioners affected by the coronavirus outbreak with grants of up to £2,500 available. Round one of this fund open on 9 April 2020
Three new funding programmes launched to further support Scotland’s creative community during the outbreak
Arts Council of Wales
Sustaining Creativity Fund
A new fund from PRS Foundation designed to respond to the changing needs of music creators, helping artists and music writers create and develop when they need it most. Opens Monday 6 April
Free tools and resources for musicians
Online commissioning scheme for artists in the north of england
The FACT Together scheme will offer 10 early-career artists working in the North of England a grant of £1,500 each plus 3 months of support to develop an idea to be presented online. Deadline for submissions is midnight Sunday 26 April 2020
How to work remotely as a musician
Advice blog from Audrey Riley, cellist, composer and ICMP music tutor on how to adapt your practice as a musician for remote working during the lockdown period.
Digital Culture Network
Arts Council England’s Digital Culture Network helps artists and organisations develop digital skills and find new ways to reach and engage audiences.
Read about the resources, events and support available here
teaching music online
SMIA digital workshop: live streaming for music projects
Digital workshop on live streaming for Scottish Music Industries Association members.
Wed 15 April 14:00 to 16:00. Info and RSVP here
Setting up for online performance
Other helpful information
Creative Industries Federation (daily updates)
ISM (Daily Updates)
Musicians’ Union Covid Impact Poll
MU call on government to protect all self employed musicians
MPG petition for more support for self employed members
Guidance for musicians on housing
advice for parents on working from home
AMA Free webinars for creatives
Ivors Academy wellbeing webinar for Music Creators
Composer, producer and performer Michael J McEvoy explores wellbeing topics including building resilience, staying motivated and looking after your health.
Thu 9 April 15:00 to 15:45. Register for free via zoom here.