In the year-end IQ 95, we're recognising ten industry professionals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty during the most difficult year in memory
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IQ's second Unsung Hero of 2020 is Alex Ampofo, who has won praise for her efforts in supporting minority and marginalised live music colleagues
By IQ on 05 Jan 2021
Unsung Heroes 2020, published in IQ 95 just before Christmas, is a tribute to some of the organisations and individuals who have gone above and beyond to help others during a year unlike any other – be that through their efforts to protect the industry, or helping those who were in desperate need.
We turned to the readership and asked you to nominate worthy causes and personalities for consideration as the inaugural members of our Unsung Heroes awards. Now, IQ can reveal the dozen most-voted Unsung Heroes of 2020, continuing with UK-based concert promoter Alexandra Ampofo, who joins the previously announced #feedourcrew in South Africa.
In addition to her regular duties as a promoter at Metropolis Music, Alex Ampofo has won praise from bosses for her consistent, caring communication with colleagues, as well as her tireless work with industry organisations Women Connect, Acoustic Live and Embrace Nation.
Ampofo launched Acoustic Live as an effort to keep stripped back music alive. “Over the last few months, we have been putting together webinars focused on moving the diversity dial in touring, hosting socially distanced music and poetry workshops, and continuing to support up-and-coming musicians with free services,” she tells IQ. “I also now sit on the board of directors for The F List, a directory of UK female musicians. Our mission is to help female and gender-minority musicians overcome structural barriers in the music industry.”
Also a not-for-profit female collective, Women Connect has a remit to create safer, inclusive spaces and equal opportunities for women, non-binary and gender-fluid people in the creative industry. Ampofo reports, “This year we managed to throw a sold-out international women’s party at Sony Music (pre-Covid), hosted themed online events to raise money for different charities, and started our own mentoring scheme with a full house of 20 mentees.”
“Our aim is to bring a new depth to understanding what our privileges are and encourage a safe space for open dialogue”
She continues, “Embrace Nation is also doing really well. We’ve had some great interaction in our company communications, and we’re doing our best to keep the conversations going, especially those about appropriate terminology, background and culture. Our aim is to bring a new depth to understanding what our privileges are and encourage a safe space for open dialogue.”
Also one of IQ’s New Bosses in 2020, Ampofo is inspiring other young people in the industry to engage in extra-curricular activities that, over time, will help make the live entertainment industry a better working environment.
She concludes, “It’s so important to communicate while we are all isolated, I think times like these can really highlight how vulnerable people actually are, and how much we rely on physical interaction in our day-to-day lives. Social media has made it easier to check in on our loved ones, that’s something to take advantage of if extra support is needed.”
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