Music conference to shine spotlight on women in music
UCLan event considers gender issues in the music industry
The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is asking why there are fewer women than men working in aspects of the music industry in a conference to be held on its Preston Campus this week.
UCLan’s first Conference for Women in Music will take place this Thursday, 19 May, both in person and online.
It will bring accomplished women in music together, including artists, performers, academics, educators, and women from the industry side of things to discuss key issues and hopefully light the way for future music people.
Lecturer in Music Industry Management Tony Rigg, who has helped to organise the event, said: “There are lots of facts and figures available that tell us there are fewer women than men working in areas of the music industry.
"There are lots of facts and figures available that tell us there are fewer women than men working in areas of the music industry. "— Lecturer in Music Industry Management Tony Rigg
“To illustrate, in 2021 PRS for music, the British institution that collects royalties for professional songwriters and composers, reported that 81.7% of its membership were male.
"It is important to note that this is not because PRS are doing anything wrong, in fact they are very proactive in addressing this and have made major inroads, but it does indicate a lack of gender parity in certain areas of the British music industry, in that case professional song writers. This conference aims to help us understand better why that is and how we can address the situation.”
The event will be hosted by radio presenter Shell Zenner and the University’s Professor Ewa Mazierska.
"I confidently expect the panellists to shed valuable light on working and creating in the music industry and that those who attend will learn valuable tips on how to navigate a career in the music industry safely."— leading British music lawyer Ann Harrison
Guests will include artists such as Claire Pilling, Emma McGann, Kirsty Almeida, Kyla Brox, producer Yvonne Ellis, Cath Sewell from Lancashire Music Service, tour manager and author Kim Hawes, More Music’s Rachel Parsons, and leading British music lawyer who authored ‘Music: The Business’, Ann Harrison.
Ann said: “I am delighted to have been asked to be a panellist at this conference. It is essential that the role of women in the music industry is discussed and that any ongoing issues are brought out into the open. I confidently expect the panellists to shed valuable light on working and creating in the music industry and that those who attend will learn valuable tips on how to navigate a career in the music industry safely."
Pioneer Kim Hawes, who was one of the very first female tour managers having worked with over 40 major bands and their labels, added: “I love to talk about the importance of women in the music industry and here is the perfect opportunity as women have come so far since I started.
“But beware it might not be exactly what you wanted to hear but you do need to hear it.”
MA Music industry management student Fay Toulios who is helping to manage the conference said: ‘Speaking as someone developing a career in the music business, I am really excited to be involved with this conference and looking forward to learning more from the amazing panellists.”
The event will begin at 2.00pm in the UCLan Creative Innovation Zone, Media Factory, on the Preston Campus.
It is supported by UCLan’s Creative Innovation Zone, Arts Council England and UK Music who are the collective voice of the UK’s world leading music industry. It is free to attend, with all welcome to join this important conversation.
Places can be booked online and those who are unable to attend on the day can stream live via YouTube.