And there aren’t that many of them, but there are some of them. Guesstimated reasons why in this Atlantic piece:
The way to “make it” as a magician involves being on the road a lot of time which some people choose not to do or are encouraged not to do, because of the kind of reproductive organs they have.
Also another reason is that young boys are encouraged to do magic while young girls are not, generally.
Here’s an anecdote about a magician in working in Vegas in the ’80s: “When I started out, I used to travel by myself–and if I was in Vegas, I’d go down to the bar to get a chili or something after my gig and the security guards would come over and check to see that I wasn’t a prostitute. So I started wearing pigtails and Keds downstairs to get my food!”
Mother Jones has some very readable charts showing the number of orchestra conductors who are female versus the number of orchestra conductors who are male. I shall not hold you in suspense: There are more male orchestra conductors. (Of the 22 top-funded orchestras in the U.S., 1 has a female conductor.) As the number of orchestra conductors period is something of a tenuous number, it’s hard to be very upset by this or to imagine changing it, but perhaps we should all buy the girl children in our lives tiny suits and batons anyway. Tiny lab coats. Tiny power suits. Tiny astronaut helmets.
From Judith Shulevitz at The New Republic, some observations about everyone’s favorite subject: “To understand why female lawyers, doctors, bankers, academics, high-tech executives and other, often expensively pedigreed, professionals quit work to stay home, you need not search their souls for ambivalence or nostalgia. In fact, searching their souls guarantees that you won’t get the story, because it’s not to be found in individual decisions and personal stories, which are always complicated and hard to parse, but in the structural realities of the American workplace.”