Interview by ARMC | Edited by Reggie Rasodi

Rosaline Yuen, a multifaceted individual whose dynamic role as the Membership Manager at the Association for Electronic Music (AFEM) is only one facet of her vibrant career. Beyond her strategic contributions to AFEM, Rosaline is an accomplished music producer and artist, infusing her passion into every beat she creates. In an exclusive interview for the Pioneers of Change series by ARMC, our very own Reggie Rasodi delves into Rosaline’s journey, unraveling the threads that weave her professional expertise and artistic pursuits into a compelling narrative of innovation and inspiration.

I know you and I recently met through AFEM however, please introduce yourself for the readers and share a little about your musical journey?

Hello, I’m Rosaline but people often call me by my Artist name ‘Roz Yuen’. I make Avant-pop that fuses trip-hop, dubstep and experimental electronic music. I work interdisciplinarily with creative technologists, visual artists, instrument-makers and choreographers. My career has taken me from Australia to the UK and now Berlin, Germany. Outside of being an Artist, I also have a passion for the music industry, live events and community building. I really love producing and leading creative projects from ideation to execution, managing budgets, timelines and assembling teams. I also get a kick out of building relationships and working collaboratively. Some of my freelance clients include Berlin Atonal, Apelago, Pathwaves and more. Right now, I’m delighted to be working as a Membership Manager with the Association for Electronic Music (AFEM).

We love a multifaceted woman, what motivated you to choose music as your career path?

I actually studied Law and Politics in Australia. I worked for years in social justice at not-for-profits and government. I was juggling this with a separate career in writing music, recording and performing as an Artist. In 2014, I moved to London to work and attended music conferences, and undertook private tutoring in voice and music production. Both tutors encouraged me to invest in my music as I had a professional attitude even if I wasn’t making money from it. I moved back to Melbourne to save up money. I was then awarded a professional development grant from the Ian Potter Cultural Institute, which enabled me to study Music Production and Sound Engineering at the Catalyst Institute of Creative Arts (then ‘dBs Music’) in Berlin, Germany. I’ve chosen music as a path because I love that all sorts of people find themselves working in the music industry. We stay because we’re passionate and it’s a buzz working in environments that foster creativity, inspiration and exchange.

Your multifacetedness reminds me so much of myself as I am learning more about you and what you do. Please do share a moment when you felt empowered as a woman in the music industry, and how did it shape your career?

In 2022, I was selected to take part in APRA’s Songhubs songwriting residency program in Sweden. I spent a week in songwriting sessions with artists, producers and songwriters from Australia, Sweden, the UK, the US and Belgium. It was a long-time ambition of mine to travel to Sweden to write music and understand the environment, which has birthed talents like Robyn, the Knife and Max Martin. Being supported to go there after many years of working as an Artist was proof that dreams can come true and that you never know what opportunities can come your way!

I always tell our interviewers for the series that at ARMC, representation matters. How has the concept of representation influenced your career, and what approach do you aspire to adopt in the music industry to serve as a positive example for future generations?

Growing up in Australia and my exposure to western media had a real impact on my sense of where I belonged or how I fitted in. When I started, I didn’t see many Asian female leaders working in the music industry and often found myself alone in these spaces with mostly caucasian males. Those circumstances emboldened me to co-found Beat Collective, an inclusive good vibes music community in Melbourne, which was geared around supporting each other as we grew creatively and professionally. I’m no longer part of the day-to-day running of this. However, I’m really proud about what it achieved whilst I was there. In terms of my approach, I recently chatted to another female working in the music industry about representation. I urged her to make her voice heard, be visible, own the space she occupied and go for things. That energy gives me power and encouragement to do the same!

I also love that my role at AFEM gives me a platform to help shape the electronic music industry for future generations. In 2023, I moderated a panel at Amsterdam Dance Music Event curated by Bumastemra to talk solutions on improving the representation of women in line ups, management and composers. It was inspiring hearing what great work is already being done. I hope we can do more panels that help facilitate dialogue, cooperation and be a force for positive change.

Collaboration is key in the music world. Could you tell us about a memorable collaboration with another talented woman and what you learned from the experience?

I’ve been lucky to have worked with so many talented women in the music industry over the years. Picking only one example is difficult. I’m grateful to each of them for the positive impact they’ve had on me and my career. One memorable collaboration I had was with LA-based filmmaker and artist, Sydney Mills. We were brought together by Nadia Says, the founder of Your Mom’s Agency, who alongside Dublab ran ‘EXP_’. It is an initiative fostering inter-city collaborations with experimental musicians from Detroit, Berlin and Marseille. We were commissioned to create a new work where I wrote the music and she created a video entitled ‘Insatiable Human’. Our work was selected by an international jury to win an award, which includes prizes from Ableton, Native Instruments, Orchestral Tools and Elektron. It was a real boost in my morale and confidence as an artist. It also cemented in my mind, my love of working interdisciplinary and with artists from all around the world