March 25 through 27 is the inaugural Women in Music Summit, a star-packed weekend of concerts, documentaries, conversations and panels at the Bearsville Center.
“The truth is that only one in 10 of the voices that you hear on the radio is a woman. So we’re starting off with a panel of women in the radio profession,” said Bearsville Center owner Lizzie Vann.
The weekend starts with a panel discussion from 4 p.m.-6:30 p.m. Friday, March 25 called “Telling Our Stories — Women and Radio,” and features Sarah LaDuke of WAMC, Meg Griffin of NYC radio fame and now a host on SiriusXM; Carmel Holt, formerly of WDST and host and producer of SHEROES Radio, Palmyra Delran of SiriusXM and Marisa Perez-Rogers, general sales manager of Radio Woodstock/WDST.
“They’re going to be talking about the role of women in radio and getting more women’s voices on radio as disc jockeys and interviewers but also on the production side as well,” Vann said.
The panel is followed by a free buffet dinner prepared by Josh Rajala, chef of The Bear, scheduled to open in April.
A Darlene Love concert is set for 8 p.m., and capping off the night at 10:30 p.m. is a slumber party with the documentary 20 Feet from Stardom, which is about the lives of background singers, including Love.
Saturday is a Women in Music Deep Dive, featuring a tribute to Ronnie Spector, lead singer off the Ronettes, who died in January.
The day will start with a continental breakfast and yoga session, followed by ‘Telling Our Stories — The Image Builders,’ a discussion about music photography with Janette Beckman and Ebet Roberts.
‘Telling Our Stories, Staking Our Claim’ is a forum featuring artists and creatives including Kate Pierson of the B-52s, local native Simi Stone and music producer and engineer Julie Last.
At 1:45 p.m. on Saturday, Pierson and Holly George-Warren will talk and sing in a tribute to Spector.
In another discussion, Genya Ravan will talk about women in the music industry. Ravan formed one of the first female rock bands called Goldie and the Gingerbreads.
A forum on women in journalism will feature Kandia Crazy Horse, Johanna Hall, Amy Linden and Amanda Petrusich. Hall wrote the song Still The One with her then-husband John Hall and it has racked up 10 million airplays worldwide.
Petrusich is a writer for the New Yorker.
Deborah Devi and local Grammy-winner Cindy Cashdollar will host another discussion about the music industry and may even play some music, Vann said.
After a dinner break, Holt will host a conversation with Joan Osborne, who will perform a concert at 8 p.m.
At 10:30 p.m., a slumber party will feature a screening of the documentary Shut Up and Sing about the Dixie Chicks, who faced banishment for their criticism of President George W. Bush. Director/Producer Cecilia Peck, Gregory Peck’s daughter, will host a Q&A session. “It’s a fascinating documentary about women in the music industry and how they were treated, how they were basically blacklisted,” Vann said. “At both these slumber parties on Friday night and Saturday night we’re serving Nancy’s ice cream and fresh popcorn. It’s going to be fun.”
Sunday morning starts with another yoga session hosted by Shakti Yoga, then a conversation with Peck and Barbara Kopple who co-produced and directed Shut Up and Sing.
The weekend caps off with an acoustic brunch hosted by Devi and Martin Schmid with special guest Cindy Cashdollar.
“At the acoustic brunch, we’re going to be giving away free Janis Joplin cocktails, which are cocktails that our bartender Chris Hack has made in memory of Janis made with her favorite liquor, which was Southern Comfort,” Vann said.
A full weekend pass for $120, or $60 for students gets you access to all events. Tickets for the Friday launch including the panel discussion and dinner are $25. Single-day tickets are also available for Saturday and Sunday.
Vann said she plans to make this a yearly event.
“It’s at the end of International Women’s Month and we’re hoping to build on it,” the said.
“It’s our first one. We’ve got some amazing sponsorship from Solar Generation and a lot of others, which is wonderful. We also have booths there that people come along and look at some wonderful products and services made by women.”
Check out https://bearsvilletheater.com/event/we-got-the-beat-women-in-music-summit for more information and to buy tickets.