Musicians’ counselling service established to tackle stress and anxiety of profession
Professional musicians, including those working in West End pits, will be able to access a face-to-face counselling service as part of a range of services designed to support their mental health.
The ISM Members Fund, a sister charity of industry membership body the Incorporated Society of Musicians, will now offer counselling over telephone and in person, including cognitive behavioural therapy.
ISM chief executive Deborah Annetts said: “Looking after your mental health is just as important as your physical health – and we know first-hand from our members the challenges out there for everyday musicians.
“The music sector has a high level of self-employed workers and in the largely unregulated gig economy, where short-term contracts or freelance work is prevalent, there are high levels of stress and anxiety.”
She said she hoped the new service would help musicians “take control” of their well-being, and contribute to the wider discussion about mental health in the arts.
The counselling service will be delivered by Health Assured and will pilot between July and December on a first-come-first-served basis.
The ISM said it intended to expand the range of services it offers over the coming year in order to provide greater support for musicians’ health and well-being.
To access the service, ISM members can call its 24-hour support and advice line. They will then speak to a qualified counsellor who will determine what type of support is appropriate.
The initiative is one of many being launched in the industry to address mental health issues. Recent measures include free counselling sessions, organised by the Industry Minds podcast.
We need your help…
When you subscribe to The Stage, you’re investing in our journalism. And our journalism is invested in supporting theatre and the performing arts.
The Stage is a family business, operated by the same family since we were founded in 1880. We do not receive government funding. We are not owned by a large corporation. Our editorial is not dictated by ticket sales.
We are fully independent, but this means we rely on revenue from readers to survive.
Help us continue to report on great work across the UK, champion new talent and keep up our investigative journalism that holds the powerful to account. Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue.