SoundGirls.Org joined Step Up Women’s Network last week to host a career day “Behind the Scenes of Music Industry” at the Rox. Step Up Women’s Network is a non-profit that works to empower teen girls from under-resourced communities to become confident, college-bound, and career-ready. The afternoon explored the fields of Professional Audio and Show Production and was joined by Pearl Jam monitor engineer and co-founder of SoundGirls.Org Karrie Keyes, Rat Sound’s Daniella Peters, Exec producer of the documentary Foo Fighters: Back and Forth, Jeanne Elfant Festa, and sound engineer at the Whiskey a Go Go Ruby Zamora. Nikki Reed actress, producer, and songwriter joined in the group discussions and invited the girls to watch sound check for the evenings performance. Nikki Reed and Paul McDonald performed songs from their new album for an evening benefit concert for Step Up Women’s Network.
Young women who are juniors from Gertz-Ressler High School and Environmental Science and Technology High School attended the afternoon career day. The afternoon started with the girls introducing themselves over the microphone and sharing their favorite bands and what they hoped to learn that day. Jeanne Elfant Festa moderated the panel that explored different careers available and educational background needed to work in show production and ended with questions from the girls. The girls then were able to watch Nikki Reed and Paul McDonald sound check, gaining a behind the scenes glimpse into what happens before the show. The afternoon ended with short workshops where the girls were able to experience setting up microphones, gain information on film making, and go into greater depth about the careers available in tour production. The afternoon was to highlight non-traditional careers that often times young men and women are not aware even exist. The all female panel was put together to highlight that careers in male dominated fields can and are done by women.
The afternoon was a great success and it was great to spend time with the young women – Some of the girls already were eyeing careers in the music industry from entertainment law to sound engineering and it was a pleasure to share our experiences with them. It was a pleasure to meet Ruby Zamora and hear her experiences starting out at The Whiskey.