30 JUNE 2017
BY Sarah Fewtrell,  co-founder of New Scenery

“I didn’t expect you to be into this kind of music.”

When I was met with this statement on nights out I thought nothing of it. Every weekend I was entering an all boys club and gradually that way of thinking no longer confused me. With an absence of women from the majority of line-ups I became hyper aware of my place within the scene. A failure of diversity in the acts booked made me and other people question my presence. The female talent is out there but can often be disregarded for novelty booking or token DJ’s.

There is a lack of women in all tiers of the electronic music industry. The people behind the decks and running the nights are men, therefore the problem reproduces itself. The failure to see yourself represented within an industry can discourage or intimidate those people from becoming involved. The efforts of altering my appearance and behaviour so as to be taken seriously proved enough motivation to start my own night.

Myself, Louie Peppe and Katherine Stewart started New Scenery this year. New Scenery is a non-profit collective passionate about music and gender equality. The collective was founded from our dismay with all male line ups and witnessing that even with the ridiculous amount of money being pumped into the club scene almost nothing good was being done with it. We are proud to add to the many collectives focusing on similar issues such as Siren, Rhythm Sisters, Pussy Palace and UNITI. These groups are really inspiring as they’ve been successful in carving out safe spaces and providing platforms for women, queer and non-binary people. We hope New Scenery has some of the success these nights have had.

Our mission is to showcase female talent whilst supporting and fundraising for causes that matter to us. We choose causes that we feel are important to women everywhere. For our first night we have teamed up with Abortion Rights. Abortion rights in England are taken for granted but with a Tory-DUP coalition and a pro life US president we can’t afford to become complacent. The legalisation of abortions isn’t where the fight ends. We need to tackle stigmatisation, lack of knowledge and a feeling of shame created by a hushed society.

We want to eradicate the novelty, exotification and questioning of women within electronic music, in order to create an accessible and all inclusive space. Until gender stops affecting the progression of individuals within the music industry it’s necessary to provide exclusive platforms in order to address the gender imbalance. Eventually these platforms such as New Scenery will no longer be necessary when it will no longer be considered a rarity for women to participate in music.

New Scenery are working to tackle gender inequality in the electronic music industry while supporting and fundraising for women’s rights issues. Their next event is on June 30th at Vogue Fabrics. You can buy tickets here.