Royal College of Music

Addressing musicians’ health and wellbeing

The Royal College of Music is taking action to address health problems among musicians.

Its Centre for Performance Science (CPS), a joint initiative with Imperial College which combines scientific and music-based research conducted a £1m investigation into the physical and mental demands of making music. The Musical Impact project drew on Conservatoires UK’s combined network of musicians, scientists and health professionals to survey over 1,500 music students and professionals.

Nearly 80% reported pain in the upper body, and stress management, sleep quality and health management were all lower than expected, confirming the need for radical change in the way musicians’ health is safeguarded. In response, CPS created Healthy Conservatoires – led by Aaron Williamon, Professor of Performance Science at the Royal College of Music.

This is an international network bringing together stakeholders from across the performing arts to support health and wellbeing. The network meets twice per year and includes more than 150 members, including representatives from the UK performing arts sector, conservatoires, schools and universities who share a vision to support and promote health and wellbeing among performing artists.