KATHMANDU: With three rising all-girl bands — House of Hope, JOTs and Shree Tara — Women in Concert (WIC) will empower women artistes and others through music and positive messages this International Women’s Day, on March 8. Women in Concert, a platform for aspiring female musicians and singers for the past 13 years, will take the stage again, to step up their mission at Lainchaur ground.
“This time we are going to have different girl bands. For the first time in Nepal’s music history, we are going to have 15 female musicians on the stage and only 12 men, for a change. This is revolution happening,” the woman behind the event, rockstar Abhaya Subba-Weise, claimed at a press meet held on March 5 at Trisara, Lazimpat. The bands were discovered through WIC’s Talent Hunt, Facebook and YouTube.
The WIC is a metaphor for women empowerment and voice of and for women.
“Lots of girls, especially of rural areas can’t see women like us. Strong women going out there and talking will generate courage in them to talk about things,” opined Subba-Weise.
She added, “Girls need to rebel a little bit to make our society more equal. It is important to put rebel on the stage. We are too quiet which is the reason why too many things like trafficking are happening. It is time to let the girls know that we are powerful and we can speak out. We never know, we can save a lot of girls from being trafficked, getting raped or being molested if we speak out.”
WIC also empowers the women participating in the concert.
JOTs’ bassist Renu Syangboo expressed, “We are just beginners. Being a part of this we have felt we have so much to do in music. Also we have some responsibilities as musicians — we have to bring about changes and empower other women through music as we are the next generation.”
It will be the second time in WIC for Sarada Dongol, percussionist of Shree Tara. And her “confidence has soared”. She explained, “Before being a part of WIC, I wasn’t sure if the audience would like and accept us or not. But it has changed. Now I feel, ‘Who will do if we don’t do it?’”
For another participant Megha Shrestha, the platform is “not about competition or jealousy but we have supported each other standing together to move forward”.
The winners of WIC Talent Hunt 2016 Shrestha, Sunita Thegim and Ishara Chamling along with promising band Metal Radio and the popular rock band Abhaya & The Steam Injuns will also rock the stage. Traditional music, cover numbers and original numbers will resound at the venue which will also see dance performance by Nepal Hip Hop Foundation.
They are also planning to take WIC to other parts of the country provided they generate the required fund. The free concert begins after 3:00 pm. — HNS
A version of this article appears in print on March 06, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.