Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Leading UK music industry bodies pledge gender equality on boards | The Guardian

A series of major UK music industry organisations have committed to gender equality on their boards.

These include PRS for Music, which handles royalties and licensing for UK artists, as well as the Incorporated Society of Musicians, the Featured Artist Coalition, the Association of Independent Music, the Music Managers Forum and the Music Publishers Association. The bodies will ensure at least 50% representation of women and “under-represented genders”.

Andrea Martin, chief executive of PRS for Music, said: “We look to reflect the broad diversity of our members at every level, and we are committed to investing in meaningful and long-lasting change.”

The move is part of the Keychange initiative, which aims to ensure better gender equality across the music industry. More than 300 organisations have now signed up – including festivals such as BBC Proms and Bluedot and venues such as London’s Southbank and Barbican centres – to ensure women make up 50% across their programming and staffing.

Other organisations newly committing to the pledge include the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, and bookings agency ATC.

The initiative is taking place against a backdrop of high-profile instances of gender inequality in 2020. Reading and Leeds festival was criticised last month for featuring no women across its six headline acts for 2021. The Brit awards only featured one British female artist across 25 slots in mixed gender categories, while the Ivor Novello awards for songwriting and composition nominated only five female or non-binary artists out of 35 nominees.

As of 2019, only 18.4% of PRS for Music members – songwriters claiming royalties – are female, though the number of women signing up rose by 60% that year.


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