Electronic music is a genre that brings people of all types and ages together. Fans of the genre feel a strong sense of community between themselves and other fans. As these communities merge by the thousands to watch their favorite artists perform, a central identity begins to take place—that’s how a culture forms. More Reading: EDM's First All-Female Festival: Together Fest Some consider the central identity of electronic music fans as progressive individuals seeking freedom, community, love, and acceptance. They pride themselves on their inclusiveness of all other EDM fans. While the genre is leaps and bounds ahead of others in terms of progressiveness, it’s still lacking in one key aspect, and that’s diversity. Head down to any major festival and you’ll find the main stage booked from 3 to 2 a.m. with mostly younger white dudes. The gender gap in EDM is alive and well, and many are striving to make steps to change it. Enter TUF FEST. The brain child of Cecilia Corsano-Leopizzi, TUF FEST is a music and visual arts festival focused on highlighting the work of female, non-binary, and transgender artists. It hosts workshops, panel discussions for aspiring musicians, and an afterparty called TUF FEST ‘Til Dawn at a location that remains undetermined. TUF, the festival organizer, is a Seattle art collective that aims to give a voice to the underrepresented in the Northwest electronic music scene. They hosted the first TUF FEST last year, and it was a dazzling success. The festival brought a crowd of hundreds and set the stage for a number of captivating acts. All indicators say they’ll take that momentum and build on it this year. “TUF ENGAGES, UPLIFTS, AND CELEBRATES ITS MEMBERS THROUGH COLLABORATION, WORKSHOPS, SKILL SHARES, AND EVENTS. TUF MEMBERS INCLUDE PROMOTERS, CURATORS, INSTALLATION/VISUAL ARTISTS, DJS, PRODUCERS, SOUND ENGINEERS, WRITERS, DANCERS, AND DESIGNERS.” — TUF The event will take place on August 26 at Judkins Park from noon to 10 p.m. It’ll be free to all ages thanks to funding by the City of Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture. The official lineup has yet to announce, but you can view additional event details here. This festival is certainly taking the right steps to create a more inclusive community in the Northwest, not only related to music, but as a whole as well. Did you attend TUF FEST last year? What were some of your favorite moments and performances? What are you looking forward to most this year? Share your responses in the comments! Landon Groves Landon Groves is a student at Western Washington University studying Journalism and Audio Technology.