The History of IGFM
Founded in 2020, the IG Freie Musikschaffende (Austrian Association of Freelance Musicians) is an open, transparent, self-managed group of musicians from all genres, who are active in Austria and earn at least part of their income as freelancers. The association strives to improve solidarity among working musicians, to collect information relevant to the branch and to improve conditions for all freelance musicians in Austria, in cooperation with the media and the government.
From the beginning, the association has been organized in a highly democratic manner. The work is divided among various working groups, and chapters in each of the Austrian states are in development. In the midst of the COVID pandemic, the IGFM has quickly become an important information and advisory point for musicians. At the government level, our “constructive and effective” advocacy for all freelance musicians has been heard, recognized and commended by officials of the Austrian Ministry of Arts and Culture (BMKÖS).
Developments in the cultural branch in recent years have forced many Austria-based musicians – particularly those who are self-employed – into a truly precarious situation. Working conditions, wages, and social security structures are in urgent need of restructuring and further development, in order to allow freelance artists a working life with a reasonable degree of security. To this end, the IGFM also examines best-practice models from other countries in order to suggest concrete improvements here.
The IGFM provides all information to its members free of charge in both German and English, in order to respect and support the international exchange essential to a vital and diverse arts scene.
The IGFM represents:
- Everyone working as a freelance musician in Austria, regardless of where they’re from
- Anyone wishing to present comments or criticism while remaining anonymous
- All freelance musicians interested in contributing actively to positive change
The IGFM calls for:
- The linking of all public grants for concert organizers with Fair Pay, Fair Play, and Fair Practice concepts
- The development of working standards and tax laws for the occupation “freelance musician”, with the appropriate social security structure
- Solidarity, not isolation! Let’s seek to understand, support, and encourage one another!