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Girls Can take over at Lancaster Music Festival 2022 

Posted by More Music on 06 October 2022

Join More Music for a day of workshops, discussion and live music for the Girls Can takeover as part of Lancaster Music Festival on Sunday 16th Oct: 10am – 6pm at Moor Space (The Dukes)

Over the past year, More Music has been supporting the development of a group of young artists, producers, musicians, sound and lighting engineers through its Girls Can initiative. 

A series of bootcamps that started in the summer of 2021 has provided a wide range of musical opportunities for young women aged between 14 -19 to build confidence and develop skills in a supportive environment, working alongside inspirational role models and industry professionals. 

With the aim of of giving young women the confidence to view music as a viable educational and professional pathway, Girls Can has been developed to empower and inspire young women to achieve their full potential. 

Research shows that women are still grossly underrepresented in the music industry. Only 21.7% of all artists are women, 12.3% are songwriters and a shocking 2.1% are producers. 

With this in mind, we created Girls Can, More Music’s campaign to redress the balance of women’s representation in music, celebrate women’s achievement and provide opportunities to explore areas of music and technology where barriers often exist for girls. 

“Uplifting women in music is crucial, as it allows women to grow in their careers and opens doors for younger women aspiring to work in this industry,” Karla Hernandez  

The Girls Can bootcamps have given young women the opportunity to develop skills in songwriting, music production, recording, mixing, and mastering, self releasing music, artist development, sound and light engineering, collaboration and performance. 

Some of the highlights of the project so far include the release of the Girls Can EP ‘In Your Shoes’, featuring 5 original tracks. Working in a professional environment, the up and coming artists led on all aspects of the process, from song-writing and recording, to mixing and mastering. Through the year-long programme they developed the skills and confidence to define themselves as artists and release this EP.

Another highlight has been the diversity of genres and standard of original material generated through the project. It’s provided a platform to spotlight the amount of talent we have in our district, with tracks ranging from afro beat, electro pop, alternative rock, folk and rap. 

The standard of performances has been amazing, especially the gig held in celebration of International Women’s day 2022 which saw an intergenerational, women only line up perform to a packed house at More Music. 

The initiative has provided career progression routes for young women into areas of the industry often dominated by men. By offering early career opportunities in production, sound and lighting through the project, some Girls Can participants are now gaining employment in these fields. 

We’re very proud that Girls Can has had a direct impact on participants musical journeys;

‘Although I have always been very interested in music playing classical piano from a young age, my first Girl’s Can workshop was three years ago when I was 14 and that inspired me so much that I decided that popular music and song writing was what I wanted to do.’

I feel that the journey I have made musically is a direct result of the help and encouragement that I have received at the Girl’s Can workshops and their amazing facilities.’ – Hannah 

More Music has also nurtured a growing delivery team of female music leaders over the course of the project, offering independent artists and industry professionals the opportunity to develop their skills as facilitators whilst acting as inspiring role models. 

Music leaders that are working in the music industry right now is an essential element of the project, as shared by one of the participants ‘having mentors that are talented successful women is very inspiring.’

Excitingly, next weekend will see some of the Girls Can artists performing at venues across Lancaster as part of  Lancaster Music festival as well as at Moor Space for the takeover day. 

The day will include a taster workshop where young women aged 14 – 19 can join the  Girls Can team for a morning of collaboration, and play with other singers and musicians and  gain hands-on experience of live sound and lighting engineering in a professional venue. Workshop tickets cost £2 and can be purchased here.

Then from 1pm – 6pm the doors open to the public at Moor Space for an afternoon of conversation and live music. 

Entry for the afternoon is free and there will be performances from all-female indie-folk band The Deep Blue and BBC Radio 2’s Folk Singer of the Year, Ríoghnach Connolly. Also performing exclusive sets are Sarah Angel & IORA, plus Hannah McMillian and a showcase set from Girls Can artists. 

There will be panel discussions  and conversations with special guests including Ríoghnach Connolly, Holly Ross for Lovely Eggs and Harriet North, exploring experiences in the music industry. We will explore how we can all work together to encourage and inspire the next generation of young women to pursue careers in the industry. 

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