Healthy Conservatoires aims to support environments that promote and enhance the health and wellbeing of performing artists, enabling them to achieve their full potential and to build healthy and sustainable careers.
Musicians have long called for better prevention, treatment and support for playing-related physical and psychological problems. In 2010, Conservatoires UK (CUK) initiated a series of town hall meetings to explore how to address these issues. This led, in 2013, to our successful bid to the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) for Musical Impact, a project investigating the physical and mental demands of making music.
Musical Impact was the first research collaboration among CUK institutions and drew on our combined networks of musicians, researchers and health professionals, in partnership with the Association of British Orchestras (ABO), Musicians’ Union, British Association for Performing Arts Medicine (BAPAM), and the International Health Humanities Network. The project confirmed the need for radical change in the way that musicians’ health is safeguarded and how musicians are trained to look after their health and wellbeing.
In response, the Musical Impact team constituted Healthy Conservatoires in 2015. Our Network now includes over 150 members from among CUK staff and students, plus members from the UK performing arts sector as well as over 50 conservatoires, schools and universities internationally.
Healthy Conservatoires aims to inspire the creation of educational and professional environments that promote health and wellbeing. The Network provides a forum where members can engage with innovation and evidence-informed practice, as well as access peer support in creating and maintaining healthy conditions for studying and working.