On Saturday I had the pleasure of attending the Royal Academy of Arts (RA) collaborative event with Royal College of Music (RCM) entitled ‘In Tune with Feminist Time’ held in The Benjamin West Lecture Theatre, at Burlington Gardens. It was a wonderful use of this space as the musicians transformed what is normally an intellectual venue into a room full of colour, texture and emotive sounds. Behind the performers were projected self-portraits from renown RA academicians, one that struck me in particular was the artist Angelica Kauffman. She was a prominent English Artist of the 18th century, one of only two founding female members of the Royal Academy of Arts and the last woman to be admitted until 1922.
In her self-portrait ‘Hesitating Between The Arts of Music and Painting’ it revealed that she was a talented opera singer, struggling between devoting herself to a career in music or art. I found this fascinating and thought it was a wonderful link to International Women’s Day as women are capable of possessing many talents and with the right opportunities can achieve success and explore their abilities to the fullest.
All the performers in this event were fantastic and revealed new music, tales of history and interesting poetry inspired from the female hand. The composers that were represented were: Barbara Strozzi, Judith Weir, Clara Schumann, Lili Boulanger, Maria Rodrigo, and a premiere by living composer Hayat Selim.
I particularly enjoyed the event as it continued the theme created by the inaugural event last year that I performed in: ‘In Touch with Feminist Futures’ which was created as a platform for myself and my fellow colleagues to present our research and performances from our Women in Music module led by the charismatic and formidable duo Diana Roberts and Natasha Loges.