For members of the Student Committee On Popular Entertainment (SCOPE) gearing up for their latest concert this Friday featuring Lil’ Baby and J.I.D., the process of choosing who to embrace the stage of the Whittemore Center is more extensive than one might think.
“The process includes discussing the hottest current acts with our agent, surveys with the UNH student body and brainstorming artists in SCOPE that will match the criteria we have developed for a show,” Stephen Rutherford, SCOPE’s executive director, said.
Rutherford ensures popular, relevant entertainment for the UNH students and communicates with UNH administration, police, fire, emergency services and student organization leaders. There are 25 members of SCOPE that Rutherford has to manage as well as the new members that join each year.
Students looking at the events page of SCOPE’s Facebook will see lots of up and coming artists and even some more established ones; however, one may notice the lack of female performers in the line-ups. The music industry has an underrepresentation of female artists, and those who do make it in the business, either are low-priced or too expensive to bring to the university, [according to Rutherford.]
“A lot of female performers in many genres are either very small and low priced and will not sell enough tickets for us to make revenue, or they are up and coming and popular yet way too expensive because of the lack of options in the category,” Rutherford said.
Executive director of Electronic Dance Music Community (EDMC), Mara Breen agrees with Rutherford that there is not enough female representation in the music industry.
“A majority of DJ’s and producers within the EDM world are male,” Breen said. “I have tried finding female DJ’s and producers to book for EDMC, but the problem is either A. finding an artist within our price-point, or B. finding an artist we believe would drive the students to come to our events. The unfortunate reality is that female artists are harder to find, especially for student organizations who work with a budget and have a primary focus of reaching the students.”
Not having female performers is not something SCOPE does intentionally, it is just an unfortunate result of the lack of female artists. SCOPE tries to bring more female artists to their concerts, and they hope that this is something they can achieve in the next year or so.
SCOPE was established in 1971, and is seen by many students as one of the most popular organizations on campus because of their efforts to bring concerts and popular to college students who might not be able to afford to pay the higher prices of larger and more notable venues such as the TD Boston Garden or the Capital One Arena in Washington.