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Hi! I'm Sam Dharmasena — I've worn a lot of different hats within the music industry but right now, I'm a DJ.
Solidarity in Sound was really born out of necessity — I wanted to channel my insights and frustrations into positive change.
I picked up DJ'ing while I was in grad school — I didn't know any DJs so I learned most things through YouTube videos. I got to a point where I could start doing gigs, but quickly realized that people were seeing me as a "female DJ" rather than a "DJ." Sometimes it was amazing — womxn were coming up to me after sets and telling me how refreshing it is to see someone like them on the decks. Other times it wasn't as rewarding — I was starting to wonder if my gender could be holding me back.
My YouTube DJ tutorials weren't really talking about how gender (and other aspects of identity) could change my experience in the music community. At the same time, I could see that there were TONS of workshops and speaker series happening in bigger cities (i.e. Toronto, NYC, etc.) that were exploring exactly what I was going through.
There weren't any online alternatives so most of my questions went unanswered.
That's why in May 2018, I created Solidarity in Sound — I wanted to build online resources for womxn and non-binary folks in music/nightlife so all the information we need is at our fingertips.
Womxn and non-binary folks face barriers that their (cis-gender) male-counterparts do not. Because of this reality, they need a different set of skills to succeed. Solidarity in Sound creates a space for these conversations to exist online.
A few months ago, I moved back to Toronto (where the workshops are!!) and have been working on Solidarity in Sound from here. Since Solidarity in Sound is focused on online resources, our reach is borderless. The goal is to support as many people as we can.
That's everything for me — I'd love to chat with you if you have questions or simply want to say hello! You can send me message at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM us on Instagram.