Girls Rock! announce To The Front Tāmaki Makaurau – name change, dates for 2022

Girls Rock! Aotearoa has been helping young women, transgender, intersex, and gender diverse youth form bands, build instrument skills, and write original songs since 2018. We are proud to announce that our Tāmaki Makaurau programme is back for 2022 with a new name: To The Front Tāmaki Makaurau.

The name change comes in order to better recognise and emphasise the diverse nature of the programme. Girls Rock! organiser Ali Burns explains:

“Given the holiday programme is neither just for girls or just about rock music we decided a rebrand was in order to ensure everyone involved felt absolutely welcome and comfortable.”

The To The Front name, having already successfully launched with 2021’s Pōneke programme, gives a nods to the feminist punk Riot Grrrl movement of the 90’s, where the phrase was popularised by bands such as Bikini Kill as a way to decentre white, cis, male music audiences. Building on that legacy, we’re bringing women and gender minorities “to the front”.

To The Front Tāmaki Makaurau 2022 will be held between January 10th and 15th. Once again the programme will be hosted by our key sponsor, SAE Creative Media Institute Auckland, allowing us access to their state of the art recording studios and equipment. Applications for participants, mentors, volunteers, and interns open September 15th.

What does the program look like?
Participants aged 12 – 17 learn instruments, form bands, write original songs, and perform at a showcase, all guided by professional musicians in an inclusive environment. Alongside collaborative learning, participants will take part in workshops about DIY merch, mindfulness, and performance skills.

Why does To The Front exist?
Girls Rock! Aotearoa launched with the kaupapa of fostering inclusivity in our musical communities by starting at the grassroots; with our rangatahi. 

A recent report released by Massey University researchers found that “more than two-thirds of women in the music community (70.1 per cent) reported experiencing bias, disadvantage or discrimination based on their gender – seven times the rate of men (10 per cent).” 

By creating an inclusive, fun, and supportive space for our young people, we’re helping to build a brighter future for music and musicians in Aotearoa.

To the Front Tāmaki Makaurau is supported by SAE Institute Auckland, the Tindall Foundation’s Next Gen fund, APRA AMCOS, Creative Communities, Auckland Foundation Women’s Fund, Serato, New Zealand Music Commission, and Recorded Music New Zealand. 

For all further inquiries contact:
Nicole Gaffney
027 812 3699

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