I left the UK for Spain and Portugal back in July when everything was so uncertain and we had no idea if and when live events would return. The music industry is usually so fast-paced, but because of the pandemic it had ground to a halt.
We had cancelled All Points East and were working towards booking 2021, but there were so many factors out of our control that it meant it was almost impossible.
After nearly 20 years of working at full speed, I was fortunate to be at a place in my career to be able to have a break – plus I really needed it. I was burnt out, to the point that I was wondering if music was what I wanted to go back to when things eventually start back up again.
I was looking at my life and what I wanted my future to look like. Having considered a career change, I realised that music is my passion as well as my job, and it runs too deep for me to do anything else.
With the catastrophic events of the past year and the devastating effect it has had on the health and livelihoods of all of those connected to the music and events industries, I was left wanting to do more. I want to find a better way to operate so that we don’t just go back to ‘normal’ when we return.
So, I created Amigas; a new live consultancy and events business, one that is kind, and socially and environmentally conscious.
I want to find a better way to operate so that we don’t just go back to ‘normal’ when we return
Amigas is a growing collective of women professionals; we are producers, promoters, curators, and creatives. We want to build back the live sector better and believe that a collaborative and integrated approach with everyone working toward a common goal, in an environment that allows them to reach their maximum potential, is the best way to achieve this.
We want to work alongside artists, labels, agents, managers, and venues on all their live needs. We offer everything from consultancy and development of strategy; event planning and production; curation and booking; and marketing and promotion.
One of the most amazing parts of the job for me, is seeing an artist going from playing in the back room of a pub to selling out arenas, and being there at every step of the way. We want to help create the next generation of headliners.
We are looking at new ways to innovate in the live space, and bring artists and fans together through bespoke events and new tech. We are excited by the endless opportunities and how we can look to futureproof the live music industry.
It’s no secret that the live industry is still very much a boys’ club. With Amigas, I want to create a space that supports a new generation of women in live music, as well as nurturing and connecting talent. I have seen so many women come and go from this industry, and I feel that this is because they do not have the right support around them.
I also want to make live music more accessible for women from all backgrounds. We need to think about diversity across all intersections; beyond sex and gender, there’s a lot of work to be done to ensure that the industry represents society.
We need the whole industry on board and pulling in the same direction in order to turn it around
During my time away, I briefly lived on a permaculture farm. I’ve always wanted to live a sustainable life, and it left me thinking about the environmental impact of the industry, and even now, how little is being done to rectify this.
If I was to return to working on events, I was going to have to ensure they had minimal – or ideally, no – negative impact. Sustainability is absolutely at the heart of Amigas and along with looking at how we minimise our environmental impact, we should also be carbon offsetting all events as standard.
I feel lucky to have had the experiences I have over the years. I was the only woman in the room for most of my career, and I’m now in a position to step up and try to change things for the better. I want other women to have the same opportunities that I did; as a music fan, there is no better job, and by building a more diverse workforce, we are creating a stronger industry.
We all have a lot to learn from each other. We need the whole industry on board and pulling in the same direction in order to turn it around. The terrible events of the last year or so have presented us with an opportunity to change the way we do things, to make this industry that we love fairer, kinder, and more financially secure. It may take us a while to get there, but that is what I hope Amigas will do.
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