Perth city will once again bring WOW - Women of the World to Scotland, when Perth Theatre opens its doors on Saturday 5th October to an exciting day-long programme of talks, debates, performances and activism.
Horsecross Arts has previously hosted two WOW - Women of the World festivals, both funded by Spirit of 2012. Following the success of these, Perth is one often cities in the UK, and the first in Scotland, to partner with The WOW Foundation for the next stage of their important work.
Jude Kelly CBE, The WOW Foundation’s Founder, commented,
WOW brings communities together in a joyful and spirited way
“What a pleasure to be returning to Perth for a third year, partnering with Horsecross as we develop the WOW Festival in new ways, linking the women and girls of Scotland with the work of our global movement.
"WOW brings communities together in a joyful and spirited way, providing a unique space for people to work together towards gender equality in their own communities. We look forward to welcoming women and girls, men and boys, from across Scotland to Perth Theatre this October.”
The event programme will be shaped by a series of WOW Thinkins to be held across Scotland, the first of which takes place in Perth Theatre on Tuesday 2nd April at 6.30pm.
Alexandra Lort Phillips, WOW Perth Festival Programmer, said, “This year will see a new and exciting format which looks at What Now and What Next for gender equality globally, building on the What Now? And What Next? programme at WOW London 2019 . The lead-in discussion groups across Scotland – called WOW Thinkins - will shape this programme and ensure we are telling the stories, and celebrating the successes, of Scottish women and girls - and across the world - today.”
if you've never been to a WOW Festival before, check out this great video from Jassy Earl, shot at last year's #PerthWOW event in Perth Theatre.
This year's reflective one-day WOW will be part of a series of WOW events taking place across the UK in 2019. Taking stock of gender equality globally and across the UK, the programme will look at how the landscape has changed for women and girls across Scotland in particular, and will discuss solutions to the challenges that remain.
Talks, debates, performances and activism, plus other special events, will connect and build on conversations across Scotland and the rest of the UK, and bring together a programme of exciting speakers, activists and thinkers - which in turn will feed into WOW 2020 in London for the 10 year anniversary of WOW as a global movement.
Additional Thinkins, full programme and line up to be announced via #PerthWOW throughout social media.
WOW - Women of the World Festival is presented in partnership with The WOW Foundation.
The WOW Foundation was created by Jude Kelly CBE in 2018 to run the global movement that is WOW - Women of the World Festivals. The Festivals began in the UK in 2010, launched by Kelly at Southbank Centre London, where she was Artistic Director, to celebrate women and girls, taking a frank look at what prevents them from achieving their potential, raising awareness globally of the issues they face, and discussing solutions together.
To date, WOW has reached over 2 million people in 17 countries on 6 continents with more than 60 festivals including in Australia, Brazil, China, Egypt, Finland, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Somaliland, the UK and the USA.
In 2018 WOW was in Perth, Rio de Janeiro, Cardiff, Bradford, Baltimore, London, Exeter, Norwich, Perth, Beijing, Ghana and Nigeria. So far in 2019 WOW has been in London and New York, and throughout 2019 and 2020 will be in London, Baltimore, Istanbul, Karachi, Dhaka, Hunza (Northern Pakistan), Atlanta, Shanghai and more.
Over the last nine years the Festivals have developed a reputation as a space for world renowned artists, activists, thinkers and performers including Angela Davis, Malala Yousafzai, Annie Lennox, Patrick Stewart, Baroness Doreen Lawrence and Salma HayekOver the last nine years the Festivals have developed a reputation as a space for world renowned artists, activists, thinkers and performers including Angela Davis, Malala Yousafzai, Annie Lennox, Patrick Stewart, Baroness Doreen Lawrence and Salma Hayek, to come and participate, alongside thousands of women and girls who don't have public profiles but are doing amazing things.
WOW provides platforms for people of all kinds, changes attitudes, brings communities together and provides a unique space for people to work together towards gender equality in their own communities.
One example of the impact the festival has come in 2015, with the founding of the Women’s Equality Party by Sandi Toksvig and Catherine Mayer.
In 2018 Kelly left the Southbank Centre to run the WOW Foundation full time as an independent organisation working to build, convene and sustain a global movement that believes a gender equal world is possible and desirable through festivals and empowering women and girls.
The unique festival model creates numerous pathways for participants to take part in WOW projects, amplify their own causes, or start new initiatives which have wide impact on communities. It is the biggest, most comprehensive and most significant festival dedicated to presenting work by women and promoting equality for women and girls.
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