P eriodically, we gather together to hear, discuss and celebrate the musicianship of Australian women. Since the early 1990s these festivals and conferences have been held in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra (twice), and this month we will be back in Melbourne for The Gender Diversity in Music Making Conferencethat will be held at the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music at Monash University. I have been fortunate enough to attend all of these events and have been, in one capacity or other, in the thick of organising the 1994 and now the 2018 Melbourne events.

The Composing Women’s Festivalin Adelaide in 1991 started it all off with composer Becky Llewellyn at the helm. Buoyed by the relatively recent 1988 Bicentennial celebrations, which did see a renaissance of interest in Australian cultural activity, and with the growing awareness in feminist musicology, we heard a number of keynotes and a series of concerts.  There were a number of Melburnians in attendance and I recall we huddled in a café and declared that the traction should not be lost. Through the tireless work of Jeannie Marsh, Thérèse Radic, Wendy Lasica, Gabrielle Baker and...

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