Director’s choice: President Halonen leads a cavalcade of influential women

Director’s choice: President Halonen leads a cavalcade of influential women

March begins with strong female themes. There are several events empowering us with talks and art on topics of equality. Our director Emilie Gardberg shares her top three plans for the month.

Women of the World: What Now? 8 March

Former president of Finland, Tarja Halonen, will take part in a large discussion on International Women’s Day on Friday afternoon. The focus will be on stories and performances aimed at empowering and provoking thought. In addition to Finland’s first female president, speakers will include Jude Kelly, Annie Lennox and more.  WoW Festival is filled with inspirational programme, putting the focus on women and on the obstacles that stop us from achieving our potential.

WoW: What Now?, Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road,
London SE1 8XX,, 8.3.2019 2pm, tickets £5– £25 conditions apply. 

Spotlight presents: A Woman’s Perspective, 8 March

Women in Focus Festival celebrates year 2018 which was heavily influenced by campaigns such as #metoo, and focuses on future work towards equality for all. The festival offers talks, performances and workshops under the theme “perception”. I’m especially interested in their showcase of young female talent under 19, in Spotlight presents: A Woman’s Perspective on Friday evening.

Women in Focus Festival 2019, Poplar Union, 2 Cotall St, Poplar, London E14 6TL,, 8.–10.3.2019,  free admission.

Poem of Ecstasy, 24 March

By the end of March the whole of Barbican will be transformed into a concert hall, when musicians and audience of the London Symphony Orchestra perform the UK premiere of David Lang’s Public Domain, 500 people strong. Following this, when entering the hall, LSO musicians will be scattered around the hall performing Philippe Manoury’s Ring. This first half paired with Scriabin’s divine Poem of Ecstasy must mean an evening of absolute amazement. Under the baton of the charismatic François-Xavier Roth this evening promises to be one of the most innovative when it comes to the concert format.

Poem of Ecstasy, Barbican Hall, Silk St, London EC2Y 8DS,, 24.3.2019 6pm, stall tickets £22–£56.

Text: Emilie Garberg Photo: Kyuu Eturautti

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