Chaired by Claire Edwardes (Astralia)
artistic director, Ensemble Offspring
with Paola Prestini (US)
co-founder and artistic director, National Sawdust
Rosanna Gunnarsson (Sweden)
composer, Konstmusiksystrar (Sisters in art music)
Several years ago, it became clear that something drastic needed to happen to tip the scales towards a fairer representation of female composers in new music programming worldwide. In 2017, Ensemble Offspring was able to realize a long-time goal of celebrating the work of female composers by programming a season of exclusively female composers. This was not advertised overtly. They just did it. And the rewards from taking a strong stance have been huge. Ours was a first step in a much overdue heightened consciousness around the programming of female composers. Should women composers demand equal representation? Absolutely. Can more be done? Yes. This session discusses the ways in which the intrinsic imbalance can be redressed through the facilitation of commission schemes for female composers and also through all music organization having 50/50 targets.