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Breaking down patriarchal norms by centring women and children's voices

When we centre the voices of women and children, we contribute to breaking down patriarchal norms.*

Here's how we go about this at B'Opera:

🤵🏾‍♀️ MotherVoice creative sessions online to give those who mother a space to breathe, connect, step away from constant demands and create

🙋🏽‍♀️ Relaxed shows, concerts and workshops where you understand that you can feed, move around, not worry about any noise your little one makes, and step away from the traditional idea that parenting has to look a certain way

🧕🏽 Offering a range of sessions from weekend morning concerts to weekday morning workshops to evening online sessions to be as accessible as possible to those with the full on caring responsibility of a tiny human

👩🏻‍🦰 Offering low cost options - many of our events are subsidised or free, and our relaxed concerts work out at £5.83 a head if you bring two children, for an acclaimed professional concert followed by playtime and free drinks and snacks! 😲

👩🏽‍🦲👩‍👩‍👧‍👦👨‍👨‍👦‍👦🧓🏿👴🏼👨‍👧 Welcoming with genuine warmth whoever brings little ones to our sessions - in a world where there are people who will still automatically make assumptions and refer to accompanying adults as "Moms", we're always happy to see the variety of fathers, grandfathers, grandmothers, carers, same sex couples, childminders and more, bringing children to B'Opera. It takes a village to raise a child. A lack of village often sees disproportionate responsibility fall to women and mothers

👩🏻‍💼 Zoë's Developing Your Creative Practice grant from Arts Council England is enabling her to explore new ways of inviting audience voices into B'Opera's work, from recording, to creative workshops, to collaboratively created pieces. That means creating and holding space for women's and children's voices

👶🏽 Studying early years musical development has made us increasingly aware of how much musical ability children have from birth. Making time and space for their voices and creative expression matters

🤵🏾‍♀️ We campaign for parent-friendly working practices, taking our babies to work, and advocating for them to be present at meetings with partners

*What does "patriarchal norms" mean? Patriarchy is a set of assumptions that our society is built on and which have been around so long that many of us don't even see them, a bit like the air we breathe. These norms centre and prioritise the voices of men, often white men, since patriarchy and gender inequality intersect with racism and other forms of oppression. Think about the pictures you've seen of a room full of male politicians making laws about women's bodily autonomy. Patriarchal thinking can be either internalised or challenged by both women and men, so it is important to recognise that this isn't about men vs women.

📷 Photo credit: Josué AS on Unsplash


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