'I've had people grab me and follow me home' Katie Owen reveals reality of life as a woman DJ

  • Watch Katie Owen on Backstage, Tuesday 11 October at 10:45pm on ITV Cymru Wales and online.

A DJ from the South Wales Valleys has revealed the challenges she has faced as a woman in the industry.

Katie Owen, who grew up in Merthyr and Pontyclun, has been DJing for five years. She started out playing in clubs in Cardiff and has since moved to London, where she is now based.

She has presented on Radio 1, performed on the main stage at Reading and Leeds Festival and toured with Kasabian.

Although there have been many career highlights, Katie has also faced harassment in her job.

Katie has performed in front of thousands of people. Credit: Katie Owen

Katie told Backstage, the ITV Wales arts programme, that she has experienced people invading her personal space while she has been working and has even been followed home.

"I've had people waiting at the clubs for me to finish... I've had someone grab me and try to force me to kiss them, I've even had someone follow me on the night bus home and run after me to my front door."

She thinks more should be done to ensure women can get home safely after gigs.

"The majority of the time it's great but there have been situations where it's dark and I'm trying to get home by myself after a set and you do get people who will follow you and be creepy."

Despite the difficulties she has been through, Katie still wants to encourage young women to get into the industry.

She has offered the following advice to those who may want to become DJs:

"You're going to have setbacks, I've had a lot of setbacks. Don't take it personally, just love what you do and keep going."

  • For support, you can call the Live Fear Free Helpline on 0808 80 10 800 or text 07458 143 415. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to provide support and guidance about violence against women, domestic abuse, and sexual violence.