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York Student Notes Gap in the Market

Posted on 1 March 2006

Music student Pauline Harding grew so frustrated at the lack of information available about careers in the music industry, that she took matters into her own hands.

The violinist, who is in the final year of a Music degree at the University of York, decided to plug the gap in vocational advice for musicians by launching her own careers magazine, Leading Note.

And it is already proving popular - with copies of the hard copy magazine sold to more than 30 university careers offices across the UK. Pauline is also negotiating with music schools and colleges over future sales.

Pauline asked leading figures in all aspects of music to write about their career paths and what advice they would offer students, or anyone else, who wants a serious career in the industry.

Contributors including Classic FM producer Sam Jackson, James Jolly, editor of The Gramophone and composer Jonathan Harvey, produced articles giving a real insight into a career in music.

The demand for the magazine has been much greater than I expected and so I cannot have been the only one to have felt the need for this kind of publication

Pauline Harding

Pauline said: "There was just such an obvious gap in careers information for musicians. Careers in music are much less structured than other sectors and so it is important to learn 'tricks of the trade' from experienced and successful musicians.

"The demand for the magazine has been much greater than I expected and so I cannot have been the only one to have felt the need for this kind of publication".

Pauline also designed a website for the magazine prompting orders from music schools, and individuals seeking careers in the industry.

She has plans for at least three issues of Leading Note and early sales have encouraged her to enter the concept into the White Rose Business Plan competition, run annually for students at the Universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York.

Pauline is also undertaking extra-curricular training in small business start-up run through the University of York's Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Enterprise.

Andrew Ferguson, the Centre Manager, is full of praise for Pauline's approach, "She has seen a problem, developed a creative solution and is prepared to put it into action herself," he said.

Notes to editors:

  • Pauline is a third year student at the Department of Music at the University of York. The University of York is one of the liveliest centres of musical education and research in Britain. During the academic year, the Department of Music is home to more than 270 music students and a large staff of professional musicians and scholars, all engaged in the study, creation and performance of all kinds and types of music. The range of music supported includes early music and contemporary music; acoustic and digital music; world music and jazz; music for the concert hall and music for the community.
  • The University of York was recently awarded a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Enterprise (CETLE) by the Higher Education Fund Council. This award was in recognition of the leading work the University has undertaken in developing the integration of enterprising skills into its curriculum. The CETLE will provide students with a 'business incubator' where they will be able to try out their business ideas in a low risk environment. More information at
  • Pictures of Pauline Harding are available from David Garner, University of York Press Office on 01904 432153.

Contact details

David Garner
Senior Press Officer

Tel: +44 (0)1904 322153