About the Series

Ladies First - Women Empowering Women Through Art -

This thematic, female-curated series, now un its sixth season, connects women accross platforms in a unifying, multifacetd event, which includes a reception, an award ceremony, a performance and an afterparty.

Lynn Bechtold, Milica Paranosic and Keve Wilson—the founders of Ladies First—are three women at the cutting edge of NYC’s contemporary music scene, and they are forging a new path in this creative concept of concert production.

Our Next Event

Ladies First - Pioneers -   

October 28th 

6:30 PM

James Cohan Gallery 

291 Grand St

New York, NY 10002

Find out more

‘It was an absolutely unique and refreshing experience in an intimate space packed with creativity and provocative commentary. a true privilege to be among such a talented group of artists.’ - Mona El-Naggar 

Our Partners and Supporters

Ladie First - Pioneers -

Photo bt Lara St. John

Ladies First - Pioneers - 10.28.2018.

  

Our 6th annual Ladies First event highlights the accomplishments of female first-timers. Visionary artists, writers, scientists, social justice fighters and other frontier fighters are being presented in our signature festive 4-part event.

Special presentations include a tribute to our friend and mentor, professor Pia Gilbert (1921-2018) and  our guest of honor, Valerie Dee Naranjo of the Saturday Night Live Band, known for her pioneering efforts in West African keyboard percussion music, all in a beautiful visual   all in beautiful visual setting  Grace Weaver's art.

We are thrilled to be partnering with the James Cohan Gallery who will be hosting the event.

STAY TUNED FOR UPDATES AND THE FULL LINE-UP

BE A PART

At this time, we are  looking for food and beverage sponsors. We are particularly interted in-kind donaiton by female-run organizations. If you own a winery, bewery, destilery, restaurant, bakery, please reach out to info@paracademia.org

SUPPORT

Ladies First - Pioneers - is funded in part by a grant from The New York State Council on the Arts

https://www.arts.ny.gov/

Aditional support provided by Robert Ford, Lara St. John,  Harlem Shake, GalleryMC

We welcome all and any additional support.

SUPPORT

Our Partners/Supporters

Ladies First - Sisters and Wives -

Ladies First/Sisters and Wives - Out Of The Shadows, Into The Spotlight -

The fifth annual Ladies First production
May 11 2018 at 7 pm at 

Opera America 

330 7th Avenue​


Artistic Portraits of: Pauline Viardot, Anna Maria Mozart, Fanny Mendelssohn, Alma Mahler, Clara Schumann and others, and drawing parallels with women of today, whose voices are not heard without a permission of their male contemporaries. As with our previous events, this multi-faceted event, celebrated women and their achievements across disciplines in a festive event, containing a reception, award ceremony, concert and an after-party.

Our Special Guest - Mona El Naggar

Mona El-Naggar is a reporter and senior video producer at The New York Times. She evolved into a filmmaker after more than a decade covering the Middle East. She documented the breakdown of the social contract between the leadership and people that led to the great unraveling – the Arab Spring. She quickly realized that Identity was the core driver of complex, chaotic events. So she began to focus on youth, women and religious extremism.
Mona spent a year reporting a project called Generation Faithful, a series of stories, videos and blog posts that went deep into the lives of young people in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
She worked in nearly every country in the Middle East. She was chased by stonet-hrowing children at the funeral for the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq. She was confronted by the secret police in Libya. She reported from Gaza and spent time with Houthi rebels in Yemen. She was harassed, pilloried in the press and had her loyalty questioned for practicing journalism in her home country, Egypt.
Since turning to filmmaking she has won acclaim for her work. She was a Pulitzer finalist for her film on a young Egyptian man who transformed from a bodybuilder into an ISIS killer. She was part of a team that produced an Emmy-nominated piece on a victim who escaped an ISIS massacre. She directed Ladies First, a documentary that offers a penetrating look at the life of women in Saudi Arabia as they vote and run in an election for the first time. Her latest work, The Story of Esraa, explores years of social and political turmoil in Egypt through the intimate story of one woman’s quest for independence.
Mona studied political economy at Georgetown University and received a masters in news and documentary from New York University. 

‘It was an absolutely unique and refreshing experience in an intimate space packed with creativity and provocative commentary. a true privilege to be among such a talented group of artists.’ - Mona El-Naggar 

MORE INFO

Video

Ladies First - We're All Immigrants -

Photo by Meschida Philip

Ladies First - We're All Immigrants -

Sunday, October 2nd 2016 7PM
The National Opera Center – Marc A. Scorca Hall 

MORE INFO

The fourth annual Ladies First production, entitled Ladies First – We’re All Immigrants was a huge success. We performed in front of the sold-out Marc A. Scorca Hall of Opera America.

As with our previous events, this multi-faceted event, celebrated women and their achievements across disciplines in a festive event, containing a reception, award ceremony, concert and an after-party.

We featured work of ten contemporary female composers, including Tania León, Kamala Sankaram, Tamar MuskalMilica Paranosic and others, played by some of the New York City's finest musicians.

Ladies First - We’re all Immigrants  -  was funded in part by a grant from New York Women Composers 

VIDEO

Event's Highlights

Ladies First - Hit it -

Ladies First: Hit It!

Ladies First 2014: Hit it! June 13, 2014, 7:00 - 10:30 p.m

Bohemian National Hall
_____

The third annual Ladies First production draws from the fascinating connection between sports and music. In our upcoming production, Ladies First will offer a personal reflection on various aspects of this connection, from comparative performance of the musical piece with a football (soccer) match through explorations of sports which are traditionally performed and rehearsed to music–such as skating, and capoeira, to setting music to a live beat of a ping pong match, and much more. It will be an evening-long celebration of the two not-so-different performance forms, which touch so many lives around the globe through the universal language of passion and lifelong commitment.

Music and performances by Lynn Bechtold, Ken Butler (Tzadik records), Vicky Chow (Bang on Can), Dan Cooper (Ute Lemper/Sound Liberation/Erbium), Valerie Coleman (Imani Winds), Lori Cotler (AKA Loire), Jennifer DeVore (Zentripetal), Patrick Grant (Tilted Axes: Music for Mobile Electric Guitars), Roxan Jurkevich (Barcelona Symphony Orchestra), Milica Paranosic, Gene Pritsker (Sound Liberation/Absolute Ensemble), Michiyo Suzuki (Absolute Ensemble), Mioi Takeda (Miolina), Keve Wilson, and Czech electroacoustic duo DVA.

Featured athletes include Emma Hayes of Chelsea Ladies, Sonya “The Scholar” Limonakis and sensei Noboru Kataoka, kendo master.

Program:

Reception with 7 – 7:45PM

Includes exhibion of Ken Butler’s ‘Sport Collection’ musical instruments and the Third Annual Ladies First Award Ceremony (award made by Ken Butler)

Concert 8 – 9:30PM

Afterparty 9:30 – 10:30PM


Ladies First - Tell it Like it Is -

Ladies First - Tell it Like it Is -

Ladies First 2013

-tell it like it is-

Thursday, 7-11pm
20 June 2013
Bohemian National Hall
321 E 73rd Street NYC 10021

Announce coming events

Featuring journalists and writers, Ladies First 2013 showcases the writings of today. These diverse stories will be complemented by music, including many new works by some of NYC's most respected and prolific emerging composers and variations on Antonin Dvorak's famous compositions.

Writers include The Moth contributer Marika Hughes, AFP journalist Gersende Rambourg, Self Magazine contributer Corinne Ramey, ABC News producer Christine Romo, writer-producer-educator Adina Williams, and transdisciplinary writer Quintan Ana Wikswo, among others.

Ladies First is a refreshing new concept for a concert series; a collective highlighting female artists in multiple genres. Musicians and composers come together with artists, founders of non-profits, authors, and filmmakers, to create an evening of music and purpose.
With the intention of women empowering other women through art, the event is a celebration of local and global accomplishments. Lynn Bechtold, Milica Paranosic and Keve Wilson—the founders of Ladies First—are three women at the cutting edge of NYC’s contemporary music scene, and they are forging a new path in this creative concept of concert production. 
(Co-produced by Composers Concordance, Composers Concordance Records, the Bohemian National Hall, and the Czech Center.)

Musicians:
Damien Bassman, percussion
Lynn Bechtold, violin
Dan Cooper, 7-string bass guitar
Marika Hughes, cello/vocals
Shinae Kim, piano
Gene Pritsker, guitar
Margaret Leng Tan, toy piano
Keve Wilson, oboe
Anja Wood, cello
Monica Yunus, soprano
Camille Zamora, soprano

Performing works by:
Bob Aldridge, Lynn Bechtold, Svjetlana Bukvich, Dan Cooper, Antonin Dvorak, Herschel Garfein, Scott Gendel, Ge Gan-Ru, Marika Hughes, Veronika Krausas, Milica Paranosic, & Gene Pritsker

With contributing journalists/writers:
Peter Christian Hall, Gersende Rambourg, Corinne Ramey, Christine Romo, Quintan Ana Wikswo & Adina Williams

Ladies First - Series Launch -

Detail your services

Inspired by adventurous women, musicians Milica Paranosic, Keve Wilson, and Lynn Bechtold initiated the Ladies First concept. More than just a concert, this inaugural event will acknowledge women in diverse fields.

This innovative chamber music concert will present music by today's leading composers together with music of past times and remote places. Performed by the finest of New York's chamber musicians, this unique, creative, and courageous production features the ladies of CCR. The evening will focus on the aesthetics of the Bohemian style, both in its traditional historical sense and in its denotation of the Bohemian style today.
The women of Ladies First are embracing the age they live in, in which the ladies are allowed, encouraged, and inspired to take the lead in any and all areas of life and arts, while losing nothing of their grace, charm, and magnetism-once their only allowed assets.

At the event, a special woman will be awarded the first Ladies First award, created by NYC artist Cecilia Mandrile.

PROGRAM

Lynn Bechtold: Murmur
Peter Breiner: The Magic Garden of Casual Delights
Dan Cooper: Follies à Deux Deux
Antonin Dvorak: Rondo for Cello & Piano, Op.94
Lady Gaga: Poker Face
Patrick Grant: Alcohol, Tobacco, & Firearms
Alvin Lucier: Violynn
Milica Paranosic: New Bohemian Suite
featuring melodies of Vitezslava Kapralova & Alma Mahler
Astor Piazzolla: Fracanapa
Gene Pritsker: Ladies First Tango
Keve Wilson: Dvorak Episode #1
plus other Dvorak Episodes by Dan, Gene, Lynn, Milica, Patrick, & Peter