The ABO helps develop the skills and knowledge of our members’ staff, including providing and signposting to high quality professional development opportunities for all tiers of management and musicians.

The ABO offers a full and diverse package of training courses in partnership with UK Theatre, and brokers mentoring opportunities by request. The annual conference, specialist managers meetings and occasional seminars also provide opportunities for members’ staff to expand their knowledge and develop their skills.

The ABO works in partnership with other organisations, including the Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy Programme, The Audience Agency and the Clore Leadership Programme, to provide training opportunities for and expand the knowledge base of its members’ staff.

The ABO aims to develop better working relations between manager and musician through its Staying Happier For Longer programme, promote best practice in health and well-being through its Healthy Orchestra Charter, in association with Help Musicians UK, and encourage more sustainable practice through the Green Charter, developed in association with industry lead body Julie’s Bicycle.

The ABO also aims to increase the amount and range of high quality family friendly performances, increase the quality of experience, and improve marketing to build and develop family audiences, in collaboration with the theatre, dance and visual arts sectors.

The ABO takes an interest in nurturing the next generation of orchestra management through providing careers advice and internship opportunities.

In this section

  • Courses and Seminars

    The ABO run courses twice a year in finance, fundraising and marketing and courses once a year in HR and working with Creative People. ABO Members can also access UK Theatre training programmes.

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  • Advice and Factsheets

    Advice and Factsheets


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  • Publications

    The following is a list of the ABO's publications.

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  • Sirens

    The ABO Trust has received a generous gift from Diana Ambache to run a new fund, Sirens, which aims to raise awareness and appreciation of the music written by historical women from around the world.

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  • Find Your Way

    A programme of sector-specific mentoring and placements for emerging leaders in ABO member organisations Find Your Way residential course announced What is Find Your Way? Designed to utilise the existing resources of the ABO and its members, Find Your Way offers emerging leaders the opportunity to discover their long term potential.  The 9-month programme, starting in October/November 2016, ...

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  • Resonate


    The ABO and PRS Foundation have launched Resonate, a new fund and resource which encourages professional orchestras to programme into their repertoire the best pieces of British music from the past 25 years.

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  • The Musician as Fundraiser

    As part of the Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy programme, the Association of British Orchestras has been working with the Musicians’ Union on a new initiative focusing on the contribution that musicians can make to an arts organisation’s fundraising efforts.

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  • Noise at Work

    Noise at Work

    The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 (the Noise Regulations) came into force for all industry sectors in Great Britain on 6 April 2006, with the music and entertainment sectors following suit on 6 April 2008.

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  • Family Arts Campaign

    Family Arts Campaign

    The Family Arts Campaign is a large-scale, national programme to increase levels of engagement by families in the visual and performing arts. Initially, six trade bodies were leading the Campaign: Association of British Orchestras, Dance UK, Independent Theatre Council, Society of London Theatre, UK Theatre and Visual Arts and Galleries Association.

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  • Healthy Orchestra Charter

    Healthy Orchestra Charter

    The Healthy Orchestra Charter was a joint initiative by the Association of British Orchestras and the Musicians' Benevolent Fund. Launched at the 2006 ABO Conference, the aim of the Charter was to set an industry-wide standard of care and award Charter Marks to orchestras that are displaying good practice towards the physical, mental and emotional health of employe...

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  • Green Charter

    Green Charter

    In November 2012 the ABO launched its Green Charter, which commits its members to recognising environmental sustainability in their planning, performance and promotion of orchestral music.

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  • Careers

    There is no set career path to being an orchestral manager and there are a variety of areas within orchestral management that you can work in.

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