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Hot Chip, Sherelle, Heléna Star, and David Rudnick join top industry execs for AVA London 2023

AVA, the UK’s leading festival and conference which celebrates the strong current of electronic music and digital visual arts, can today reveal plans for its annual conference taking place on Friday 24 February 2023 at Printworks as part of the venue’s final season. 

Hot Chip’s Alexis Taylor and Joe Goddard will take part in a headline keynote interview to discuss their experience as one of the UK’s most infamous crossover electronic acts, fresh off the back of selling out multiple Brixton Academy shows. Hot Chip have been pushing the boundaries of pop, electronica and synthpop since their debut in 1995, and this will be a rare opportunity to hear them discuss their journey.

After launching ‘Beautiful’ last year, esteemed DJ and Hooversound label boss Sherelle will sit down in discussion with Niks Delanancy (founder of Black Artists Database and co-founder of BEMA) to discuss the motivation behind the project. Beautiful is a label / organisation that offers resources for black and queer artists, inspired by Sherelle’s own experience within the industry and a drive to share her own knowledge.

Other participating speakers will include Jaguar (BBC/BEMA), Heléna Star, (FoundationFM/BEMA), Hannah Shogbola (Primary Talent, BEMA), Steve Hogan (WME), Simeon Aldred (Broadwick Live), Lynn Cosgrave (former Acting Management for Carl Cox, John Digweed), Maria May (Head of Electronic at CAA), Lady of the House, Tom Ketley (FLY Events), Tristan Hunt (AFEM) plus many more.

Commenting on the programme, AVA Founder Sarah McBriar said,

“As a festival, AVA seeks to push the boundaries of immersive arts, music and technology and we carry this ambition through to our conference which continues to bring music fans, talent and industry together each year to explore the most pressing challenges and opportunities of the moment. Our collective focus as an industry on diversity, innovation, and sustainability has never been more important in driving our future success. With more names still to be announced, we are excited about getting together for one last time at Printworks before its closure, with a view to plotting a path for the continued growth of electronic music and arts in the UK.” 

The programme’s selection of talks and workshops will focus on four key themes: Innovation, Diversity, Sustainability & The Future, with discussions centring on topics within our current electronic music industry. Inspired by the relationship between cutting-edge technology, music and art and the evolution of the metaverse and NFTs, a leading panel with David Rudnick will explore the question “How is technology changing the way we create, view and collect art?’ A further panel led by the Association for Electronic Music (AFEM) will explore Neurodiversity In The Music Industry. This session will see AFEM present the results of their research with a selection of experts and artists and will look at how leaders can empower neurodiverse colleagues and artists.

Finlay Johnson, Business Development and Partnerships Manager, AFEM added,

“Supporting neurodiverse people working in the electronic music industry is at the heart of AFEM’s health work, which is why we conducted the first AFEM Neurodiversity in Electronic Music Survey to understand the breadth of their experience and seek to inform employers and the wider industry what they can do to support and harness this talent. Continuing our partnership with AVA and hosting this panel of industry leaders is key in highlighting the significant role neurodiverse people play in the electronic music industry.  Through this panel, AFEM and AVA will examine the challenges facing people with neurodiverse conditions. It will further explore the many strengths our neurodiverse colleagues and artists offer the industry while highlighting the opportunities music businesses and the self-employed should consider to ensure that neurodiverse people can thrive in the workspace.”

Resident Advisor will curate an edition of the RA Exchange Live series with Tony Andrews, the founder of Funkton-One audio and Turbosound. A pioneering force in the professional audio industry since its formation in the early 1970s, Andrews' sound systems have been enjoyed by millions of people around the world from Pink Floyd and Frank Zappa to Roger Waters' Berlin Wall Concert and, more recently, Space Ibiza, Carl Cox’s Awesome Soundwave at Wembley Arena and, of course, AVA Festival. 

A Drop-In Area which will host a range of brands from labels and charities to tech and equipment. In this space, Steel City Dance Discs will host a tape making workshop for guests to learn the craft of the cassette. Networking activities will increase this year with space for meetings and industry catch-ups aimed at generating business and attracting talent. Full details will be announced shortly. 

Tickets for the conference are available from just £15 – and can be purchased from Kaboodle here.

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