Classical music's most successful woman presenter

..the most successful of all women announcers – her personality is a combination of dignity and friendliness. There had been female announcers on the Third from the very beginning – Marjorie Anderson, and also Joy Worth, who had a lovely, slightly ‘ginny’ voice. You’ve got to be a very special woman to have a good broadcasting voice – the male voice is, normally, much harder and clearer. I brought Patricia [Hughes] back after her maternity absence. Later I brought in Elaine Padmore and Susan Sharpe.
Cormac Rigby, presentation editor of BBC Radio 3 from 1972 to 1985 remembers Patricia Hughes who has died age 90. That fulsome praise appears in Humphrey Carpenter’s The Envy of the World – Fifty Years of the BBC Third Programme and Radio 3, a book that also contains an anecdote relevant to the current dumbing-down debate:
Rigby recalls that Stephen Hearst [controller Radio 3 1973-78] did not initially share his enthusiasm for Patricia Hughes: ‘He took me out to lunch, and we were talking about reducing the starch in the network, and Stephen said: “My dear Cormac, you have to get rid of that terrible woman with the Kensington voice.” And I realised he meant Patricia, who was the most popular individual member of my announcing team, and I said, “You must be joking.” He wasn’t, but he was always a big enough man to rethink his own prejudices.’ Hearst himself confirms he soon came to admire her greatly.
Patricia Hughes is seated in centre front in the header photo. Readers who remember the days when BBC Radio 3 really was the envy of the world will also recognize from left to right standing, Jon Curle, Victor Hallam, Tony Scotland, Donald Price, Cormac Rigby, and seated left to right, Tom Crowe, Peter Barker, PH, Robin Holmes and Norman McLeod. There is a nice Tom Crowe story here.

Also on Facebook and Twitter. Any copyrighted material on these pages is included as "fair use", for the purpose of study, review or critical analysis only, and will be removed at the request of copyright owner(s). Report broken links, missing images and errors to - overgrownpath at hotmail dot co dot uk


Recent popular posts

I have seen the future and it is cardboard

New classical audiences need new music

Towards infinite potential

Four great albums that are victims of clickbait correctness

Classical music must woke up and smell the coffee

Have all the really great musicians come and gone?

When classical musicians fought against tuxedo fascism

The Berlin Philharmonic's darkest hour

Virtue signalling does not sell concert tickets