In 2021, the theme for International Women's Day is "Influence with Impact". We are all responsible for our own actions and thus can choose to positively influence our world. Anyone can stand up against gender inequality and break taboos in order to strive for an equal society. These women inspire the AB team, not just on March 8, but every day.
Laura Mwanambuka, Ticketing and customer service
“On this day I would like to celebrate my mother, the strongest woman I know. She moved from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and started a life here, made some sacrifices and still managed to bring joy, love and have an impact on the people around her. She is the most inspiring person I know. I hope one day to be at least half of the woman she is.”
Elise Phamgia, Coördinator Liveurope
“To me, Margrethe Vestager is one of Europe’s superheroes. She’s currently the Executive Vice President of the European Commission and she gained international recognition in her ceaseless fight against the abusive practices of the so-called “GAFAM” and some of the world’s biggest multinationals. She’s a true role model, and the epitome of a fierce leader! Fun fact: she was the inspiration for Borgen, a brilliant series where Denmark is led by its first female Prime Minister.”
Ilse Schoonackers, HR Manager
“Marina Abramovic to me means persistence, courage, strength and serenity. Her most well-known performance took place in MoMa, New York in 2010. She sat motionless in a chair for 700 hours. None other than Björk, Patti Smith and Michael Stipe took a seat in the chair facing her. Silence, time and focus are important themes in her work. Counting kilos of rice during an expo can be immensely annoying... or refreshing. According to Marina Abramovic change is only possible if you can endure discomfort and I think she’s 100% correct.”
Joke Van Ransbeeck, Digital Marketeer
“I nominate my friend Denise, who frolics through this world as if it were hers. From Aruba to the Netherlands. From Tarifa to Barcelona. From Ireland to the US of A. Because I admire her in all her strength and weaknesses. I admire her ambition and the way she chases her dream, and I love how she sometimes doesn’t have a plan at all. She just keeps on going. I also find her incredibly funny and I miss her a lot.”
Ward Cannaerts, Manager Marketing and communication
“As a fan from the get-go, Lous & The Yakuza keeps on inspiring me. Her Tiny Desk Concert and her appearance on ‘The Tonight Show’ with Jimmy Fallon shows she is ready to take the world by storm. At the same time, she uses the power of her music to make the regions where her roots lie in Rwanda and Congo, more livable. Plus, she was one of the people who organized Black Lives Matter in Brussel and she just got asked to translate Amanda Gorman’s ‘The Hill We Climb’ to French. My admiration for her is immense ❤️!”
Marc Decock, Concert promotor
"Valentina Terechkova, the first female (Russian) cosmonaut in 1963. Something was wrong with her Vostokcapsule, but she had to stay silent about that for years. I used to collect ‘chromos’ of the Jacques Chocolate, including for the album 'Rush to the stars' and I was able to fill that up. Valentina was added to pictures a bit later, but in a big format, on the 200-gram chocolate bars. However, there was no space left to stick her picture between Joeri Gagarin and John Glenn. Did the chocolatiers forget her? She acts as an intergalactic bookmark for me, and I have been informed that now, at a later age, she still wants a single trip to Mars."
Lara Decrae, Intern communications
“One of my biggest inspirations is the politician Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. I can often find myself thinking: ‘What would AOC do?’. Mostly because of the way she is both passionate and fierce when it comes to standing for what she believes is right, but also still a vulnerable human being. She is not afraid to show sides of herself that by some would be perceived as ‘weak’. She is also honest and will treat everyone with the same respect, no matter what. These qualities make her a whole new kind of strong and authentic, I also aspire to be one day. “
Astrid De Sterck, Concert promotor
"There are a lot of women that inspire me every day, both people I’m close to as artists, writers, and musicians. Little Simz is one of them. Her last album ‘Grey Area’ is a powerful ode to herself as a rapper and to women and can give me the energy I need for an entire week on Monday mornings. She compares herself to Jay-Z, Picasso, and Shakespeare, and rightly so."
Lien Peters, Social media & Storytelling
“My daily source of inspiration: DJ, radio host and music journalist Mary Anne Hobbs. There’s nothing better than waking up to the sultriest voice in the UK, every day on BBC Radio 6. Humor, passion and the best melodies. Fascinating musical journeys with an infusion of the Arts, mid-mornings for music lovers. Her eclectic and excellent musical choices colour my corona times.”
Anysa Grammenoudis, Ticketing and customer service
“Cardi B. She’s authetic, honest and teaches women to take control of their own narrative. She’s also hilarious, a real comical genius if you ask me. During the elections she made it her mission to inform her followers and urged them to go and vote. All the while she’s breaking musical records like it’s nothing. She does what a lot of artists don’t dare to, she takes a stand.”
Tom Bonte, General Manager
“In 2014, after almost two decades Barbara Raes said goodbye to the artworld and started delving into new mental and physical spaces for farewell rituals in a secular society. In 2016 she founded Beyond the Spoken. A workplace where she creates rituals for unrecognized loss with artists.
Barbara followed her intuition and her heart. First as a colleague and now as a friend of many years I was able to look at it from up close with great admiration. Some of her practices feel very far removed from me and push me out of my comfort zone. But maybe that’s exactly what makes her so important to me.”
Maïsha Amany, Allround collaborator
“Ha! How to choose one woman that inspires you when you’re surrounded by women that inspire you. Grandmas, sisters, mother, friends, colleagues, singers, actresses, … But because I picked Aaliyah’s ‘Try Again’ to go on the playlist, I will go for this queen. I vividly remember the day she passed, and I still find it a shame. She was young and already had her own sound, something I really look up to. But what she meant to me as a young girl had everything to do with her attitude. She showed me it was okay to not completely fit into the female stereotype. RIP.”
Dennis Bols, Financial Manager
“I think Nafi Thiam is a superwoman. She has fought herself up from a humble background and has trained herself to death for it. It’s undisputed that she’s at the world top when it comes to the 7-camp, one of the most difficult disciplines there is. The way she pushed her pain threshold in the Olympics and threw her spear incredibly far with an injured elbow was beautiful and showed so much perseverance and willpower. She also has a lot of charisma and is a great ambassador for the country.”
Max Gadeyne, Promotions festivals & projects
“Charlotte Adigéry without a doubt is one of the greatest musical revelations in our recent Belpop history. She brings such a cool, fresh sound in which multiple influences come together. She’s also always on point when performing live and knows how to keep it interesting. In any case, Charlotte Adigéry is going places, mark my words.”