International Trombone Festival 2012: Where are the Women?

The International Trombone Festival will be hosted by Jacques Mauger in Paris, France this summer. What  a lovely place for such an event! Too bad M. Mauger failed to invite a single female artist to the festival. Of the 42 artists that were invited, all are men. Of the 9 composers that were invited, all are men. Not only is this in inaccurate representation of the current trombone demographic across the world, but it is also incredibly insulting to all female trombonists.

There is currently an extended dialogue of over 60 comments on trombonist Abbie Conant’s FaceBook page, for she posted:

Jacques Mauger, who programmed the 49/0 men to women ratio for the ITF 2012 has a post on his FB page that says, “ITF PARIS 2012 – the best trombonists in the world will be there, why not you???” (You have to scroll down a bit to see it.) I answered, “Why not? Because there are 42 men invited as soloists and 0 women. And all 7 composers are also men. Total: 49 to 0! This is insulting to all women trombonists, all women musicians, and all enlightened men.” Perhaps you can go to his FB page and tell him what you think too. I’m sure he’d love to hear from you…

The majority of the comments that Abbie has received have been in outrage at the situation at hand. Men and women Aalike have expressed extreme disappointment in the organization of this year’s ITF. Some comments have expressed sympathy for M. Mauger saying that he is such a nice guy and shouldn’t receive so much flack for what is sure to be an oversight. While M. Mauger is probably a nice guy, the fact that he has not responded or made efforts to invite women trombonists to his festival exudes intentional sexism. He has the opportunity as a leader in the trombone world to correct his “mistake” so that the International Trombone Festival’s reputation is not, “ITF 2012: Women, Stay Home”

One thought on “International Trombone Festival 2012: Where are the Women?

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  1. Quel dommage-What a sad situation. As a female harpist, I have been aware of the plight of the few but excellent male harpists in my world. We always balance and include them in all our world congress and harp society concerts. Your instrument is not adequately represented by only having men perform in Paris. And I flew across the world to hear my son perform bass trombone this week; now I want to “boycott ” I mean GIRLcott the entire festival. The festival poster also exhibits a male gender-based bias and should be removed from the website for the festival. It would be like portraying all harpists as blonde, long haired females in flowing gowns. Get with it Mr. Mauger! Women are 52% of the planet.

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