Bauer Media

Classical music has long been a male-dominated industry. One look at the Academy Awards shows the very small number of women composers who have been nominated and won awards in the scoring categories. To date, only 3 women have won a scoring Oscar since the Academy introduced the category in 1935. Scala Radio intends to help work towards readdressing the gender imbalance by launching a new partnership with a charitable foundation, Donne and amplifying women across the station.

Donne, which works to promote and support women in music, will highlight female composers who have never been played on the station before, with Scala Radio selecting ten pieces of music to premiere across the month. Initially a three-month partnership, the campaign aims to introduce a wider audience to these composers and ensure that their work can be enjoyed by all.

This March, female composers of the screen will take the lead in a new series ‘She Scores on Scala Radio’. Composers Pinar Toprak, Jessica Curry, Isobel Waller-Bridge and Nainita Desai will each guest host the programme every Sunday across March from 6-8pm, playing some of their favourite classical music, from their most loved women composers, the music that’s inspired them in their career and some of their own scores.

The 4 guest hosts have been given free rein to curate their show. For example, Pinar Toprak, the first female composer to score a feature film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is focusing on the music of superhero movies, including influential scores such as Superman, Batman and new releases like Wonder Woman 1984, along with her own work on Captain Marvel.

Jessica Curry is celebrating her varied musical influences, including Sinead O’Connor, Bette Midler, Rachel Portman and Enya. Jessica’s love of choral music will shine through in her selections by Errollyn Wallen and Hildegard von Bingen, and she’ll also select particularly significant tracks from her video game scores to Dear Esther, So Let Us Melt and Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture.

Ahead of then, across Sunday evenings in February, Scala will be home to guest host Eddi Reader MBE who shall present a new series ‘Eddi Reader’s Scala Songbook’ on classical and folk music. The singer-songwriter, often celebrated as Scotland’s greatest living female voice, will be honouring the folk tradition and explore its many similarities with classical music.

Programme Manager for Scala Radio, Jenny Nelson said:

“We’re passionate about celebrating diversity within the classical music world. It’s an industry that boasts incredible works from a broad range of artists and composers, yet the perception of classical music is all too often of a musical world that is pale, male and stale.

“We know that there is still a lot of work to be done, but in shining a light on these brilliant female talents we hope that we can better level the playing field and begin to work towards a future where women are equally represented.”

Isobel Waller-Bridge added “I’m really happy to be invited onto the show to play some of my favourite works by female composers. I’ve put together a programme of music that unlocked a really important creative space for me in the early years, and music that continues to inspire me. I’m looking forward to spending an evening playing work from these amazing artists, and talking a bit about why they mean so much to me and my music.”

Music composed for the screen makes up a large part of the soundtrack that listeners can expect on Scala Radio, with programmes from the likes of film critic and broadcaster Mark Kermode playing much-loved movie music, Luci Holland’s weekly video game music show ‘The Console’ and ‘Screen Time’ with Charles Nove, which features music from TV, films and games every weekday between 9-10am.

To find out more about the programmes available and to listen live, you can head to

‘She Scores on Scala Radio’ Schedule

Sunday 7th March, 6-8pm: Pinar Toprak

Sunday 14th March, 6-8pm: Jessica Curry

Sunday 21st March, 6-8pm: Isobel Waller-Bridge

Sunday 28th March, 6-8pm: Nainita Desai

Episode 1 of Eddi Reader’s Scala Songbook is available on request.

Source Bauer Media

January 26, 2021 7:00am ET by Bauer Media  


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