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February 21, 2023 | Laura Murphy

Hidden women in music

As we come closer to International Women's Day, we celebrated female composers

We were honoured to be approached by Lewes Music Group to take part in an event that celebrated female composers who were unrecognised by their communities, because they were female.

It was at the time when only men were acknowledged as having talent in this field.  Women could write and perform but only in their own households.  Pianist Sofia Medina and Cellist Pablo Tejedor-Gutierrez brought to life the music of Louise Farrenc and Fanny Hensel-Mendelssohn (sister of Hans Mendellsohn) in the intimate atmosphere of Cliff Hall, Lewes.   The lights were dimmed, small electric candles placed around the floor where the audience sat entranced as Tania Long, our in-house artist constructed an abstract painting in response to the emotions raised by listening to the music.  It was magical to see this projected onto the wall and to watch its progress as the music filled the room.

It reminded us yet again that women’s achievements are too easily minimised, that brilliance can so easily be dimmed.  It is up to us all to ensure that we support each other in bringing out talents to the fore, and that the men in our lives support us too.

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