Kathy Valentine, accomplished musician, writer, original member of iconic female band the Go-Go’s, and current member of The Bluebonnets, is spearheading She Factory, a series of programs that showcase Austin’s female creative pool.
She Factory brings these events, beginning with “The Song Pool,” an evening of songs and discussion about music, to the people in Austin for a voluntary contribution to SAFE Alliance. While Valentine wants people to be able to attend within their budgets, she does require this contribution as attendees’ way of participating. The tagline for She Factory is self-explanatory: “Assembling the Talent of Women in the Arts.”
In a nutshell, these programs highlighting Austin women in the creative arts are sponsored by local women, in order to remove the burden from the community. She Factory events are free to the public, compliments of Austin women in business. While music makes perfect sense as a starting point for these programs, with lifelong musician Valentine at the helm, future events will involve women from other creative arenas.
She Factory’s Maiden Voyage
She Factory launches with The Song Pool, a “freestyle” musical event on Sept. 19 at The Townsend. Sharing the stage for a night of music and talk are Austin’s own Nina Diaz, Carolyn Wonderland, Jane Ellen Bryant, Suzanna Choffel, Patricia Vonne, and Ruthie Foster.
The event is free and open to the public, but a voluntary donation is requested to benefit SAFE Alliance. SAFE Alliance is the now combined services of Austin Children’s Shelter and SafePlace. Their mission is to help end sexual assault, exploitation, child abuse, and domestic violence through prevention, intervention, and advocacy for change.
One aspect of the evening that excites Valentine is introducing these artists’ fans to new powerhouse women in the Austin music scene. “Someone who loves Ruthie Foster may have never seen Nina Diaz or Suzanna Choffel,” explains Valentine. This cross-exposure to various talented women who call our fair city home makes the event extra special.
“At this She Factory event, The Song Pool brings together a variety of women songwriter/performers in an interactive, casual environment to play some of their songs and discuss with both the audience, and the other performers, the art of songwriting. She may discuss the specific song, what inspired it, or how songwriting in general impacts, narrates or expresses aspects of her life.” -Kathy Valentine