Iceland Airwaves has become the first major international festival outside of the U.S. to close the gender gap. Their move is a part of the global initiative Keychange, in which 109 festivals pledged last September to further gender equality at music festivals with the goal of achieving an equal gender ratio by 2020.
In explaining just how simple it actually was for the festival to meet such a goal, Iceland Airwaves’ head of operations Will Larnach-Jones, recently told the New York Times:
“We looked at people we really liked, and then in meetings said, ‘Do we have enough?’ Happily, we always did. That shows you don’t have to try hard — there’s so many inspiring women around.”
To date, none of the world’s largest festivals including Glastonbury and Coachella have signed up to the initiative, though some have offered financial support.
The 20th edition of Iceland Airwaves takes place November 7-10th. This year’s lineup includes international acts such as Faroese star Eivør, Swedish performer Fever Ray and Soccer Mommy (U.S.) as well as popular local musicians like Sóley, Young Karin and Hildur.
photo: Iceland Airwaves Becomes First International Music Festival To Close Gender Gap