News story

Payment/non-payment of performers at Olympic Ceremonies

DCMS response to public enquiries.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Government recognises the importance of the arts and the widespread impact that music and musicians have on society. It is for this reason that Arts Council England (ACE) is proposing to invest £213.7 million in music organisations from 2012 to 2015.

Talent, excellence and innovation remain at the heart of the ACE music portfolio across the country, and they continue to support music to expand and flourish across a wide range of styles and genres. The wealth of talent in Britain is widely acknowledged and is a source of huge national pride.

We do, however, understand concerns over the recent headlines about the use of musicians at the London 2012 ceremonies.

The four ceremonies are organised by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), a private organisation operating independently of Government. LOCOG has an agreement with the Musicians’ Union, that while they will not be paying volunteers or amateur musicians, or headline acts, all other professional musicians will be paid.

LOCOG has said that it stands by that commitment, and is not aware of any official approaches made to professional musicians asking them to perform for free, and if such instances are brought to its attention, and are genuine approaches from LOCOG, then it will make sure they are in line with its commitments.

LOCOG believes that it has pro-actively created opportunities for amateur musicians and local talent to perform at their venues - which provides a great opportunity for them and showcases the breadth and depth of London’s talent.

Anyone who has more specific concerns is recommended to contact LOCOG directly at:

London 2012
One Churchill Place
Canary Wharf
E14 5LN

Tel: 0203 2012 000


Published 17 July 2012