Today’s post is dedicated exclusively to women and to honoring their presence in the world of radio. It’s nothing new that women’s context in society is always going through changes. Years of battles were spend for them to conquer their place under the light and still to this day, women face debates regarding the democracy in communication.
Radio itself went through periods full of small revolutions and adaptations as we’ve already mentioned here on our blog post regarding the importance of radio in society. In Brazil, for instance, women held a place of of great importance in making radio popular, through the participation of artists in live broadcast shows, play adaptations, the famous radio soap operas; which in turn made anonymous women into celebrities. Thus, many names have set their mark in history with their singular voices, such as Emilinha Borba (1953), Marlene (1950) and Linda Batista (1937), who are considered the fore-mothers and queens of Brazilian Radio.
However, the strong female presence as Radio Singers was in contrast with their weak participation as hostesses, operators, or managing roles in radio stations. In the late 70’s, women’s presence on shows such as ‘Viva Maria’ was aimed to increase interaction with female listeners by broadcasting discussions on a series subjects in order to mobilize listeners against domestic violence and to inform them about defending the quality of reproductive, as well as sexual, public health services.
A fight for Female Representation
Nowadays, women lead teams, have their own voices echoing to the four corners of the earth expressing their ideas and opinions. However, filling in all this space is still a challenge. With cultural convergence, it’s becoming more and more common for online radio stations to be led by teams of women only. For instance, Rádio Butterfly maintains female voicing as it’s main trait.
With a captivating but calm voice, Marcia Cristina Rodrigues has been a journalist, Tarot Reader, and radio hostess for over 28 years. She talks about the migration to online radio, which though being challenging, represents a new market opportunity. “In other countries this change has already been happening quicker than we can imagine, in Japan car are coming out of the factories with wi-fi connections. I believe the future of conventional radio is for all of the to become digital”, she says. Marcia remembers her story in the communication universe and is touched as she remembers how hard it was for her and emphasizing that: “I’ve always been the only woman at the stations where I worked.”
She tells the story with enthusiasm of her period as a television hostess in the show called ‘TV Mulher’ (woman TV), which aired between 1980 and 1986. “Though it was a great experience, my passion has always been the radio. I love gaining people’s hearts and talk with people in simple ways, the exaggerated visual production bothered me. On the radio, I feel more at ease.”, she says. Today, a past pioneer in a historic TV program, hosts a show on Radio Butterfly from 2p.m. to 4p.m, containing news and information, as well as tarot reading and entertainment. Her audience ranges from housewives to girls, curious about mystical secrets.
The tarot reader defines her online broadcasting career as easygoing, and with a lot of baggage that a life of good experiences hold, interacting with listeners, answering phone calls and selecting songs for the music programs has become something very common in Marcia’s life. “We’re going through an adaptations phase, setting up a studio and searching for material to improve our broadcasts.”, she emphasizes.
Marcia still leaves a message for all the women who are in the business. “Try not to limit yourselves and chase your dreams. Don’t give up upon seeing the arduous path ahead; we must be represented.” She ends saying that the best gift she could get is respect.
The Internet allows us to go beyond traditional broadcasting , creating more space for new audiences to be segmented through the ease of online radio.