Gary Richards — owner and founder of HARD Events — has issued a formal apology following the release of a controversial trailer advertising HARD Festival's upcoming event last week.
In the badly received trailer, Richards tried to tackle sexism in the music industry head-on, with director Agata Alexander drafting in various male DJs to don fake breasts and experience awkward sexist scenarios she herself had once faced.
Following an extreme backlash from much of the dance music community, including negative tweets from The Black Madonna and Annie Mac, a representative for HARD reached out to FACT magazine with the following statement:
“Here at HARD Events we are here for everyone. The HARD Summer trailer was created as a satirical piece to raise consciousness at a time when equality issues are of utmost importance. Our goal is to promote good music and we are trying to give women more of a platform at our festival.
“My intentions here were only to help, not offend anyone, in supporting Agata’s vision and message. I understand that she does not speak for all women and how people could be upset by the trailer. There is always a risk of misinterpretation when satire is used, but we felt it was right to let her express herself and have creative control over the piece. We want to extend a sincere apology to those who were offended.
“We hope the conversations started by this piece bring the change we intended and we will continue to be a champion for Women’s rights within our community and world at large.”