If you are being abused and don’t know where to turn, the Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton is here for you.
For 2018, we will be donating $1 from each weekend pass sale to The Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton (SACE)
“While I am sure we can agree that we should certainly be celebrating Women each and every day, I very much appreciate having this one day where the whole world stops and honours the strength and resilience of our wives, our sisters, our mothers, our grandmothers, and our friends.
Cheryl Sandberg, the Chief Operating Officer of Facebook said ‘In the future, there will be no female leaders, there will just be leaders.’
My name is Jeremy Kornel and I am the executive director for the Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival. For those who don’t know, the Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival (BBRF) will be taking place June 15 through 17 right here in Beaumont.
For 11 years the BBRF has brought to Beaumont the best in Canadian music from all genres, cultures, and demographics with an underlying mission to showcase our community, its talent, its businesses, and its people. We want to show the world that Life IS better in Beaumont. Over the years we have grown beyond being only a music event by incorporating various initiatives to further our support of our community, the arts and youth. This includes our Youth at the Blues support for young performers, our artisan market, and our community group presale fundraising opportunities.
As a team of dedicated volunteers, and stewards of the BBRF legacy, we have always felt that it is our responsibility to be bigger than our event. We have always wholeheartedly supported the community of Beaumont, the music community, several other not for profits, and the entire Region we live in.
2017 has been a startling, yet eye-opening, year in many industries. It may very well be known as THE year that women collectively found their voices and their courage to speak up and speak out… using words like #MeToo and #TimesUp.
We have witnessed the film, TV, and music industries shaken by numerous accounts of inequality, exploitation, and abuse. Many of these accounts have been revealed to have occurred over long periods of time and centred around the systemic marginalization of women. These accounts cite instances of unfair treatment, harassment, and in some cases violence and assault. I am here today to talk about the issues as they occur beyond the acceptance speeches, cross-country tours, and the red carpet moments. I am here to speak up about this issue as it relates to us. As a community and as humans. The music business is plagued with inequality when it comes to women pursuing their dreams.
As someone with over 25 years experience as a performer, event planner and music fan; who performs as part of a band with 2 talented women, I have witnessed and heard first-hand cases of this inequality. These issues are far reaching beyond what you see in the media and the celebrity cases these are issues that affect women in the industry at all levels.
Women who work hard to hone their craft, learn their instruments, train their voices and perfect their art.
Women who have to work harder, bust the stereotypes and shatter stigmas to achieve the same respect as their male counterparts.
Women who have to grit their teeth, bite their tongues and smile through derogatory comments that have become commonplace in an industry that is strongly male dominated with almost 5 males to every female musician worldwide.
Women who step off the stage and are complimented, commended and judged not by the quality of their song, their musicianship and performance – but by their appearance, what they wore on stage and how they presented themselves.
Women who walk into a venue carrying their own guitar case to be asked by the sound tech “when is your guitar player arriving”.
Women who are asked if they are “buying a gift for their boyfriend” when they are looking at instruments in a music store.
Women who are asked by management and agents to lose weight, to dress a certain way, to wear shorter skirts or to act more flirty.
Women who are told they should Smile more.
and by far the worst….
Women, countless women and girls, who are touched, propositioned, threatened or manipulated into unwanted and uninvited physical situations, and even assaulted – all as part of being a women in the music business.
Women in the music industry have to deal with comments like
“You’re a good guitar player … for a girl”
“You’re a good rapper… for a girl”
“You’re a good drummer … for a girl”
“You’re a good performer … for a girl”
It is time for a reframe.
“For a Girl” should NOT be an insult.
“For a Girl” should not carry negative connotations.
“For a Girl” should not in any way take away the power away from any talented female musician and artist.
“For a Girl” needs to be empowering.
“For a Girl” needs to be a statement of pride!
“For a Girl” needs to be a celebration.
Women are kicking ass right now and some of the most creative and talented artists both locally and in the music industry as a whole are incredible empowered females. With this in mind, the BBRF is stating an intention and a mission to support and empower not just women in the music industry but ALL women.
I am so proud to announce the Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival’s “For a Girl” initiative.
We are stepping outside of the “festival norm” and starting this year, The Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival will be mandating a minimum of 50% female focused talent on both our Main stage and our Jef Gibbs Community Stage. Additionally, for 2018, the BBRF is programming a 100% female focused Friday night lineup on both of our stages. Friday, June 15th from 4 pm till midnight both stages will feature female acts both local and nationally recognized performers.
In addition to this mandate, we expanding our support of marginalized and mistreated women.
To assist in their fundraising, and to bring further awareness to these issues the Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival has chosen to align with the Sexual Assault Center of Edmonton (SACE) throughout this year’s festival. We will be providing our fans, followers and patrons information on SACE and what services they offer to our community as well as providing fundraising opportunities in conjunction with The Beaumont Blues and Roots Festival based on our 2018 ticket sales.
We want to spread awareness, support and empowerment.
We want to celebrate and complement the many women who have faced this adversity while working hard to pursue their dreams.
We will be encouraging the widespread use of the #foragirl hashtag on all social media outlets.
Start today, get on your instagram, Facebook, and Twitter and proudly post about what you do. Tell the world about how you have worked hard towards achieving your dreams – hashtag it with #foragirl. Let work together to spread this message beyond Beaumont, beyond the region, beyond Alberta or Canada but to the world.
Above all the BBRF is proud to provide a safe and inclusive environment for our performers, fans and all guests at our event.
If you or anyone you know has been subject to mistreatment or abuse we encourage you to seek help, talk to someone you trust or reach out to a support organization such as the Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton.” ~ Jeremy Kornel, on International Women’s Day 2018