Music - A Career Overview

It is important to understand that employers hire people, not degrees. The skills and knowledge you develop as a result of your education, as well as in your work and community activities, have the greatest impact on hiring decisions. Listed below are some specific knowledge and transferable skills you will acquire as a result of your university education and your focus on Music.

Specific Knowledge Skills

  • The skills to communicate, interpret and understand ideas and information through music/performance
  • The ability to create, edit, arrange, stage and present music for a variety of mediums and purposes
  • Awareness of how ideas, emotions and culture are expressed through music, arts and performances
  • The skills to design and manage performances/activities in a way which will capture others’ attention
  • Awareness of culture/societal change as expressed and represented through music and performance arts
  • An ability to use music and sound to provide information and create mood or atmosphere
  • Skills to select and/or direct music, performances and events which will best represent ideas/information
  • An appreciation of musical techniques and history and the value of music and performance
  • Able to analyze, interpret and appropriately convey musical background/theories to others
  • Skills to teach others about music appreciation, performance and the care of musical instruments

Valuable Transferable Skills

Information-gathering and Communication Skills

  • The skills required to identify and access a wide range of relevant information and resources
  • The ability to compile and organize facts and information and to comprehend and apply new and/or unfamiliar information to different situations and settings
  • Skills in preparing interesting, creative and informative presentations which target diverse audiences
  • The ability to develop attractive/effective reports, presentations and materials using current technology

Thinking, Planning and Organizational Skills

  • The ability to learn, understand and interpret information and apply knowledge to new situations
  • The ability to set priorities, meet deadlines and effectively plan/manage time, data and resources
  • Problem-solving skills and the ability to make well-reasoned decisions, think creatively and search for, identify and consider all sides of an issue
  • Skills to effectively analyze and interpret a wide range of information and data to discuss, support and/or reject ideas, opinions, reports, theories and proposals

Teamwork and Management Skills

  • Skills enabling you to work effectively as part of a team by identifying your role and contributing, through leading, teaching, motivating and/or encouraging others, to the success of the team
  • An understanding of how to successfully identify, plan and contribute to the goals of a project
  • The ability to oversee, supervise and/or contribute to a project from beginning to end including determining outcomes, planning details, making decisions, assigning roles and completing task

Career Options (Samples Only. Additional education, training or experience may be required.)

Artist’s Assistant
Arts Program Administrator
Band Director
Booking Agent
Broadcast Technician
Children’s Music Performer
Choir Organizer/Master
City/Cultural Event Planner
Club Promoter
Convention Centre Director
Cruise Director Theatre Manager
Donor Relations Manager
Festival Co-ordinator/Organizer
Film Music Editor
Foley Artist
Instrument Designer/
Instrument Maintenance
Jingle/Commercial Music Writer
Music Agent
Music Camp Director
Music Composer
Music Copywriter
Music Distributor
Music Equipment Sales
Music Historian
Music Industry Manager
Music Librarian
Music Producer
Music Program Co-ordinator
Music Programmer
Music Publicist
Music Software Designer
Music Store Manager
Music Talent Scout
Music Teacher
Music Therapist
Music Video Director/Editor
Music/Arts Reporter/Journalist
Music/Concert Promoter
Music/Retail Buyer
Musical Arranger
Production Assistant
Radio/TV Broadcaster
Record Sales Manager
Recording Engineer
Road/Tour Manager
Session Player
Sound Effects Designer
Sound Technician
Soundtrack Composer
Special Events Manager
Speech Therapist
Stage Manager
Ticket Sales Director
TV/Music Host
Vocal Coach

Potential Employers

Advertising Companies
Arts Councils
Concert Halls
Dance Clubs/Restaurants
Educational Institutions
Film/TV Industry
Instrument Manufacturers
Media Organizations
Music Producers/Studios
Music Publishers/Distributors
Performing Arts Centres
Radio/Video Companies
Recording Studios


Canadian Association for Music Therapy -
American Federation of Musicians -
Canadian Music Educators Association -
Canada Council for the Arts -
Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers Canada -
Music and Film in Motion -
Songwriters Association of Canada -
Freelance Musicians’ Association -
Music Canada -

Are you interested in learning first hand about the careers our alumni have successfully pursued? Connect with Laurier alumni through the Alumni Sharing Knowledge (ASK) program. Participating alumni represent a variety of disciplines, careers and industries.

In addition, the Career Centre has compiled Career Profiles from Laurier alumni. Read about their career paths and how their experiences have led them to their current roles.

This resource is available at the Career Resource Centre.

© 2019 Wilfrid Laurier University - Orbis Career / Co-op Portal Professional v3