Music as a Profession
A unique selling point with regard to Austria as a music country is probably the number of authors. This claim can be derived from a comparison of the Austrian and German collecting societies. According to its annual report for 2021, the German GEMA has 75,535 authors, 4,884 publishers and 4,442 legal successors among its members, while the Austrian AKM has around 25,057 authors, 738 publishers and 1,702 legal successors in the same year. Germany therefore has ten times as many inhabitants as Austria, but only three times as many authors. The revenues of AKM in 2021 amount to EUR 86,746,000, those of GEMA to EUR 1,038,904,000.
The performance rights society LSG counts about 19,376 performers and about 4,987 producers among its members in 2020.
By way of comparison, the study on the social situation of artists in Austria states an estimated group size of 20,000 to 30,000 professionally active artists in all artistic fields. The group of professionally active music creators is therefore probably smaller than the figures of AKM and LSG would lead us to believe, although the boundaries of the professional field are blurred, since multiple employment in this artistic field is actually the rule.
Info brochure "Surviving in the music business. Handbook for composers and musicians in Austria" to download
booklet (German only): “Überleben
im Musikbusiness. Handbuch
für Komponist:innen und
available for download at