U.K. new-music agency’s goal: 50% women composers by 2020

Posted on: March 8, 2017

“Back in the summer of 2014 … we noticed at Sound and Music, the national charity for new music, that our composer application data was telling us something important,” writes Susanna Eastburn, Sound and Music’s chief executive, in Monday’s (3/6) Guardian (U.K.). “At every single stage of development, from GCSE [General Certificate of Secondary Education] onwards, the gap between male and female applications widened—from 50% at GCSE level, to the 35% female applicants to our summer school, to the 25% female applicants to Sound and Music’s various professional artist development programmes…. This week, to mark International Women’s Day, Sound and Music are announcing that by March 2020, at least 50% of the composers we work with will identify as women…. We will increase the richness of content and visibility of women composers across our platforms and programmes.… We’re confident that working with a more representative group of composers leads to a more thrilling variety of new music, more artistic innovation and also, perhaps, a positive and constructive challenge to an industry that can sometimes fall back on traditional ideas of what, or rather who, constitutes a composer.”

Posted March 8, 2017