I want to show the world, as much as I can in this profession of music, the vain error of men that they alone possess the gifts of intellect and artistry, and that such gifts are never given to women.
Maddalena Casulana (c. 1540 – c.1590).
…depuis 1986 aux Victoires de la musique (France), il y a eu 25 lauréats « soliste instrumental » masculins pour 5 femmes, 14 pour 9 dans la catégorie « Révélation, soliste instrumental » et, cerise sur le gâteau, pas une seule compositrice récompensée en 16 ans.
Lucile Commeaux. Trop de femmes dans la musique classique ?! (19 janvier 2017)
The status of women composers is dramatic. Thanks to the research undertaken by the participating organisations, we are able to confirm that they represent between 35% and 45% of all of the composers and creators of music in any European country but still only a maximum of 1% of their music (traditional, popular, classical, contemporary) is programmed by public funded institutions (in some countries this reaches 5% but the vast majority of European Orchestras of all kinds and festivals are still not programming a consistent number of works by women) while 89% of public arts and culture institutions are directed by men.
When a woman is exceptional within the musical realm, she is complimented for ‘playing like a man’ or ‘sounding like a man’. However, when a man is exceptional, he is a genius.
Leonoor Rinke de Wit. The Woman Composer Question.
There is no need to invent accomplished women composers of the past. We only have to pay careful attention to history and bring neglected works to light. While I am always in favor of encouraging and supporting new works by women, we also need to acknowledge the long history of women who composed against all odds.
Beyond Mrs. Bach. Sarah E. Baer, M.A. in Musicology and Women’s and Gender Studies.