Aussie producer Human Movement has withdrawn from forthcoming Queensland electronic festival Rabbits Eat Lettuce, citing a lack of gender diversity on the lineup.
The producer, Edward MacDonald, announced he was pulling out from the festival lineup late last week after initially being announced on the lineup earlier this month alongside the likes of Hermitude, Opiuo, Late Nite Tuff Guy, Shockone, Grouch and Motez.
“This would normally be an exciting festival lineup post however this time around it’s to announce me and my team have decided to withdraw from performing at this year’s Rabbits Eat Lettuce,” wrote MacDonald on Instagram.
“Sorry to those who have already bought tickets to come and dance with me, however it is apparent the gender balance of artists on the lineup is way out of whack and to not use my platform to say something is tolerating that exact issue. We can do better as an industry and community.”
For context, the bill for this year’s Rabbits Eat Lettuce – as Instagram account @LineupsWithoutMales helpfully points out – contains only 8% of artists that feature at least one non-male performer. Those artists include Godlands, Made in Paris and Lucille Croft.
Rather than use Macdonald’s withdrawal from the lineup as an opportunity to commit to diversity, Rabbits Eat Lettuce responded on the producer’s Instagram post by citing the old “there just aren’t as many women making music” defence.
“The reality is that most of the agencies that sell artists to use come to us with male artists (such as yours). In addition, when we open the festival’s music applications we only receive about 5% female artists applying,” festival organisers wrote.
“This is just a fact of the market. There are many more aspiring male artists than females pursuing careers in the field at this time. All we can do as event promoters is book artists from the available pool of talent and encourage more females to enter the industry by booking quality female artists when the music alines [sic] with our vibe.”
“We don’t book artists based on gender, we book on talent, music & energy. It’s all about the music.”
Festival organisers went on to suggest Macdonald doesn’t “quite have a thorough understanding of the industry and the market” and suggested rather than pulling out from a festival lineup, he should “start by encouraging and nurturing females that want to get into music”.
See Rabbits Eat Lettuce’s response below. The festival is scheduled to take place – sans Human Movement –this November at Landcruiser Mountain Park in Queensland’s Sunshine Coast Hinterland.