At a glance
  • The ISM reported that 1 in 5 of it’s members had already experienced issues regarding future work as a result of the Brexit vote.
24th November 2017

Brexit discussions at the Incorporated Society of Musicians’ round table meeting

With the Chancellor’s bleak budget forecast ringing in our ears, and a recent report by the Resolution Foundation think tank predicting that the UK is on course for its longest fall in living standards since records began over 60 years ago, do we really still want Brexit?

This was the subject of conversation at the Incorporated Society of Musicians’ (ISM) recent breakfast round table meeting. The issues facing the creative industries shine a light on the issues all businesses will face post Brexit. Charlotte Jones, Chief Executive of the Independent Theatre Council expressed concern that with the enormity of pressing problems, pleading for the arts will be increasingly difficult. With representation from the Guildhall school of Music & Drama, the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, the Centre for Youth Music, the International Artist Managers’ Association, and many others, the ISM had pulled together a heavyweight team of experts to debate this most divisive of subjects.

The ISM reported that 1 in 5 of  it’s members had already experienced issues regarding future work as a result of the Brexit vote. One anecdote concerned a German violin professor resigning from his post on the 24 June 2016, the day after the referendum, as he was worried about the kind of country Britain might now become.

Other issues debated included: How easy will it be for artists to travel across Europe post Brexit? Is an ESTA style two year pass one possible solution? How will we attract talented musicians to study in the UK, if they don’t have the opportunity to stay and build a career here? How much will the arts suffer without access to the Creative Europe Programme?

Deborah Annetts, Chief Executive of the ISM challenged the group on whether Brexit should mean Brexit and asked whether, despite the lack of political will for this, we should be asking for a second referendum on the terms of Britain’s exit?

The ISM have recently launched the movement FreeMoveCreate to champion flexible travel for creatives post-Brexit. It was reported that the term “Free movement of Labour” has now become so politicized  that  Civil Servants have stopped using the phrase.  

With 2018 earmarked as the European Year of Cultural Heritage, it seemed that there was a real fear of how Britain would now be perceived. All agreed that if Brexit does mean Brexit, it would be more important than ever to strengthen ties with Europe, and to build strong, lasting and resilient relationships to help weather the uncertainty to come. There was a strong feeling that we needed to be bold and continue to advocate Britain’s incredible creative and artistic strength.

As Insurance Brokers helping to insure a large community of amazing musicians and instruments all across Europe, we wholeheartedly agree.