Association of British Orchestras

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

We recognise the lack of diversity in UK orchestras and acknowledge the enormous amount of work which needs to be done. The ABO was a significant contributor to Arts Council England’s report into ‘Creating a fairer and more inclusive classical music sector for England’. We believe fundamentally in supporting and promoting positive, meaningful change in our industry, society and the wider world. We pledge to be more attentive, to do better and to foster a space where everyone is both seen and heard. In doing so we strive for an orchestral sector that is without fear of prejudice or exclusion and that is fully inclusive, representative and reflective of the communities that we serve.


In partnership with Black Lives in Music and the Musicians' Union and in consultation with our members, we have developed a 10 point action plan towards a more inclusive hiring and recruitment practice for UK orchestras and choirs. Members can click here in the Members' Area of our website, to find out more.



Attitude is Everything Charter of Best practice which aims to improve deaf and disabled people's access to live music

Black Lives in Music

CCSkills Fair Access Sector Support programme for cultural organisations and employers in Scotland

Gender Equality on and off the Stage

Music Masters' I’M IN (Inclusive Music Index) organisational Diversity & Inclusion audit tool, informed by its highly successful trial in 2020 with 60 music sector organisations.

Keychange - A number of ABO members have signed up to the 50/50 gender balance pledge

LIVE - EDI Resource Library

Power Up - an ambitious, long-term initiative which supports Black music creators and industry professionals and executives, as well as addressing anti-Black racism and racial disparities

Seven Inclusive Principles

UK Music Diversity Taskforce

The League of American Orchestras have launched three new equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) 'Catalyst' learning resources tailored to the orchestra field:

Online recorded sessions

Orchestral Connections (2021 symposium) Session: Inclusive Orchestras

Annual Conference

The next ABO conference will take place in Gateshead,
hosted by The Glasshouse ICM, from 5-7 February 2025.