We were proud to launch our Both Sides Now programme officially this week – on the 23rd November – with a major event held at Old Granada Studios. The night was hosted by the wonderful Miranda Sawyer and was filled with inspirational speeches from Beth Orton, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, Anna Meredith, Alison Clark (ACE’s National Director of Combined Arts and Lead for the Ambition for Excellence programme), PRSf CEO Vanessa Reed, Youth Music COO Angela Linton, and artists Ova, LayFullStop, AFRODEUTSCHE, and Ione.
Our CEO Debra King, and Head of Programmes Kate Lowes also spoke to the audience of 300, who were treated to a performance from the first Both Sides Now Residency cohort. Led by Both Sides now Ambassador Beth Orton, the group played newly written material that, alongside visuals from Ella Deacy, was poised and mesmeric. You can listen to the tracks below…
The response from the audience was inspiring in itself; (the Brighter Sound team have been left quite taken aback). The talk was heartfelt and it was met with whoops and cheers as people spoke of their experiences and perspectives of the gender gap in music. Speakers were animated and it created a genuine sense of excitement and expectation that was felt across the room.
The #BothSidesNow hashtag trended too, as the conversation really seemed to start as people watched.
Such an amazing spirit of generosity, bravery and determination here at @BrighterSound #BothSidesNow Launch tonight. Privilege to be here. (Twitter)
As Debra said in her speech, this is just the beginning. We were really moved by the number of people that came to support the event, and of course we have so many amazing partnerships through which this programme will begin to grow and evolve.
As she also said,
“We recognise that currently equality is much more central to discussions and debates across the music landscape than it has ever been. But there is still a big gap between what we all say – the rhetoric, the wish to embed equality into our industry and the reality.
Both Sides Now is all about bridging that gap and taking action to effect permanent change. It’s about working collectively as part of a network to move from awareness to doing and to making that change happen.”
You can listen to all the guest speakers from the evening below…
Thanks so much to all who helped make the event as it was. To keep updated on the Both Sides Now programme, sign up to our newsletter, and if you’d like to get involved in any way, get in touch.
Both Sides Now is supported by Arts Council England’s National Lottery funded Ambition for Excellence Programme.