There is an undeniable exhilaration that comes with experiencing a live music event.

The pulsating music, the enthusiastic crowd, the spontaneous sing-alongs, and the warm afterglow all leave concert-goers in a state of bliss. For these reasons and many others, more people than ever are pursuing a career as a live music event professional, and MI is helping students make that dream come true with its Live Music Event Production program!

Statista offers encouraging numbers for aspiring live music event professionals, thanks to its findings that, from 1990 to 2017, revenue rose from $1.1 billion to $8 billion. As you might imagine, that number is great news for anyone who wants to work in the live music industry. The music industry is on the lookout for a broad array of professionals who want to turn the music industry into their career.  

You Have Several Career Path Options if You Want to Become a Live Music Event Professional

Depending on your interests, abilities, education, and experience, you have several exciting career choices in the live music field. As a matter of fact, with all the possible choices, it may help for you to explore five of the many live music careers that you might choose and how you can make sure you are ready for the job!  

1. Live Sound Engineer, Sound Technician, Sound Person or Audio Technician

If you have ever been amazed at the ability to hear your favorite band’s music at a concert, whether you were in the front section or walking out to the concession stand, you can thank a live audio engineer. This music industry professional is an expert at setting up and using a soundboard, making sure that levels are consistently correct and that the mix is right at theaters, concert venues, and corporate functions. Within this key role, there are sometimes sub-categories of possible jobs for industry hopefuls at large concert venues that include the following:  

  •    Systems Engineers
  •    Monitor Sound Engineers
  •    Wireless Microphone Engineers  

2. Lighting Technician  

The dazzling light and visual elements that leave music fans in awe during concerts and theatrical performances are controlled by the lighting technician. Key duties of this important music professional include hanging lights, rigging lights, managing the placement and movement of lighting equipment, and ensuring that all gear is functioning properly before a show begins.  

The lighting technician may work directly for a musical act, or he or she may work for the venue hosting live events. A lighting technician may also work at several live venues as a respected expert, supervising on-site technicians to ensure high-quality lighting at their own clubs, bars, concert halls or stadiums.  

3. Touring Careers: Tour Manager, Tour Coordinator, and Tour Publicist

Tour managers and coordinators manage scheduling, transportation and finances for an artist while on the road for a tour. Basically, this professional helps keep everything in order for the artistic talent, so they can solely focus on their performance.  

The nature of role, like so many other live music careers, may change, depending on the artist’s profile and the tour budget. For larger budgeted tours, which are often associated with artists on major recording labels, the position is more formal. The tour manager may supervise several other tour production workers, such as the tour publicist to ensure good word-of-mouth throughout the tour. When it comes to independent artists with modest budgets, the tour coordinator is likely to wear many hats, performing most, if not all, tasks in tour management.  

How to Become a Live Music Event Professional 2

4. Production Manager

Becoming a part of a team, or a leader of the team that brings a show together is a big and satisfying job. Think about all the elements it takes to deliver a high-quality concert, filled with premier audio and lighting, and you will have an idea as to why music aficionados choose this particular live music career path.

These professionals see the big picture, combining an artist’s vision with the realities of each venue where they will perform. A production or project manager develops live experiences that serve to connect artists with their fans in targeted markets and performance spaces.  

5. Venue Worker: Manager, Bartender, Runner, Stagehand, Sound Engineer or Lighting Technician

Not all work in the live music industry is directly and solely associated with the production itself. Concert attendees are looking for a full and satisfying experience, which may include food and drinks, in addition to impressive sound and lighting.  

Working as a manager that regularly hosts musical artists is a pivotal role in ensuring a tailored environment to both the artist’s and the ticket holders tastes. This job is a balancing act, but it is highly rewarding, providing value to both valued parties. Venue managers develop strategies for team members like bartenders, stagehands, sound engineers and light technicians, meaning that these positions are all important when considering a career as well.  

What Is the Best Path to Become a Live Music Professional for You?  

For any of these career choices, a live music professional can take different paths, such as learning the ropes as a musician or venue staffer. However, this method may leave gaps in crucial knowledge to help you stand out from the throngs of fellow music lovers.  

At Musicians Institute, we believe that related education and on-the-spot practical experience through apprenticeships are the best ways for you to become a well-rounded music professional in a variety of live venues.

Learning from professionals in the music industry and from academia at Musicians Institute can make all the difference in helping you get started on an exciting and successful career path as any type of live music professional you want to become. We offer a full scope of degrees, allowing you to take your studies as far as you choose to.  

Further, we are dedicated to developing students’ creative skills and natural talent, offering essential tools to develop careers in the live music industry. If you’re looking for a top contemporary music college in the middle of the entertainment industry, take a closer look at Musicians Institute.


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