Emily Eavis: Glastonbury pageant ‘has to achieve 50/50 gender-balance’

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Emily EavisImage copyright Getty Images

Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis says the pageant has to achieve a gender balanced line-up as quickly as it might probably.

“Our future has to be 50/50,” she tells Radio 1 Newsbeat.

“It’s a challenge. Everyone’s finding it hard – but the acts are there,” she says, including that previous Glastonbury line-ups have “always been male-heavy”.

Her feedback come after criticism that many festivals do not have sufficient feminine or female-fronted acts on their line-ups.

Emily was named godlike genius on the NME Awards in London, the place Glastonbury was named finest pageant on the earth.

“When I look again at previous Glastonbury line-ups, I realised it is all the time been male heavy.

“Unless you consciously change and really address it, then it will stay the same because we’re always going to be flooded with male acts.”

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Taylor, Lana and Diana are all acting at this 12 months’s Glastonbury

This 12 months’s full Glastonbury line-up hasn’t been printed however Taylor Swift is among the three headliners, alongside Paul McCartney.

Lana Del Rey and Diana Ross are different feminine acts who’ve already been introduced however, general, an equal gender cut up is unlikely this 12 months.

“I wouldn’t say we’re necessarily clean on 50/50 but we’re definitely attempting it,” Emily says.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Emily Eavis picked up the Godlike Genius award subsequent to Taylor Swift and Billy Bragg

This week, Reading and Leeds’s preliminary line-up announcement was criticised by some for having far fewer feminine acts than male ones.

So far, there have solely been three feminine or female-fronted artists introduced for Reading and Leeds’ foremost stage (Mabel, Bloxx and Lady Leshurr), in comparison with 15 male acts.

The 1975’s frontman Matty Healy has since mentioned he’ll solely play festivals sooner or later that decide to attaining a extra gender balanced line-up.

Emily Eavis says it is “amazing” he is spoken out and thinks everybody will really feel “cornered” into change.

When Emily was arranging this 12 months’s line-up, she explicitly blocked out spots for feminine acts, filling the clean areas with the phrase “female”.

She says she needed to have a “firm word” together with her bookers as a result of “it’s very easy to do the same”.

“We’ve got a long way to go, but we’re making an effort.”

What are the artists saying?

It’s not simply the folks working the festivals who’re eager to see change, it is one thing artists need too.

“The fact that it’s been so male dominated for so many years has probably given females less room to become headline acts,” Sam Fender tells Newsbeat.

But he says what The 1975’s Matty Healy has deliberate will not work for smaller artists.

“I respect Matty for what he’s doing, but it’s harder for artists that are coming through to turn down these opportunities.”

Ella Eyre says male-dominated festivals have “been the norm” all through her profession to date.

“It’s shameful because there are so many incredible female artists,” she tells us.

Rising star Clairo believes feminine illustration is “one of the most important things.”

“There are more than enough female artists to go round and should be something people think about when they’re booking festivals,” she says.

And Heloise Letissier – higher know as Christine & The Queens – desires adjustments all through the trade, not simply on pageant levels.

“The music landscape needs to represent more equality through women in A&R (artists and repertoire), women in record labels and engineers in studios,” Heloise says.

Primavera in Barcelona and Iceland Airwaves in Reykjavik are among the many worldwide festivals which have managed to placed on a gender balanced occasion.

As for Reading and Leeds, its guardian firm Festival Republic introduced the Rebalance programme in 2017.

Rebalance is an ongoing an initiative to provide studio time to rising feminine artists, within the hope they will be booked for festivals sooner or later.

The organisation additionally runs Latitude, the place Haim are headlining, and are behind The 1975’s summer season present in Finsbury Park, London.

Image copyright Reading and Leeds
Image caption Reading and Leeds’ 2020 line-up has been criticised for an absence of feminine acts

Glastonbury has one headliner nonetheless to be introduced and Emily is teasing some “massive surprises” however is not giving something away.

She additionally says that banning single-use plastic bottles on the 2019 pageant has been the “most successful environmental campaign” the pageant has ever achieved.

“It was phenomenal,” she says.

“When we started it we thought it would take a few years to gather momentum but everyone seemed to listen in the first year we did it.”

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