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Programme Dark Economies
Department Academy of Music & Theatre Arts


Thesis title

Beyond the Female Popstar Paradigm: Selling Songs in Dark Times


This study explores pathways into the music industry which avoid the female popstar paradigm. The explosion of visual media presents opportunities for songwriters to synchronise music with film and TV, potentially offering far more lucrative careers than the traditional sexist and ageist routes dictated by popular culture.  

As an academic and published songwriter with a subsidiary of a major music label, an autoethnographic case study is being prepared to navigate the journey of the artist in a commercial world. Topics of ageism and the uncivilised, tabooed female voice will ask, can women musicians sustain a career into midlife and beyond? 

Researcher bio

About the researcher

Having grown up in a family of Birmingham funeral directors, travelling the world in a spiritual cult, single parenting and studying a Songwriting degree, Julianne signed to a subsidiary of Universal Production Music. Her songwriting practice forms the backdrop to her research degree, which is investigating pathways into the music industry for marginalised artists while examining creative and commercial processes.