IN CONVERSATION WITH

EDITH BOWMAN

THE OUTNET’S Head of Content, Claudia Mahoney, caught up with the renowned broadcaster and knower of all things film, music and television, Edith Bowman. In case you missed their live interview, we made sure to save some of the best bits…

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Blue cashmere sweater

Claudia: So, you’re not in London anymore is that right?

Edith: No, we moved out just to be close to family really, just outside of London. Not far, but just before Christmas we made the move out and Yeah, amazing timing to be honest!

Claudia: How old are your kids then?

Edith: So, Spike has just turned 7 and Rudy is 11. So, homeschooling is (thumbs up).

Claudia: I was going to ask, that was going to be my next question!

Edith: Oh my gosh, I mean, I can’t get anything done! You know, both my husband and I are self-employed. He’s in a band, one of the rooms is like his studio so he’s grabbing any opportunity he can. It’s like, with what he does, his creativity, it can’t be timetabled. I’ve always had a lot of respect for teachers beforehand, my sister-in-law is a geography teacher, both my in-laws were teachers, so I know how hard they work. But, this is another level.

Claudia: I want to ask you how you ended up in this amazing career, especially coming from somewhere that’s not connected to it. 

Edith: Yeah, I think it originally comes from having a passion for something. Weirdly I grew up around music and film, not in a kind of industry side of things but as a fan side of things. My grandad had a little hotel in Scotland, we always had dinner dances on a Saturday night, there was just music everywhere. And then my dad was always a gadget man. So, he set up a little Saturday morning film club in the hotel and he’d show these films all the time. So, we had a constant flow of really good films in the house that, you know, I’d secretly watch sometimes. And in that environment I saw how hard my mum and dad worked, but I saw how much they enjoyed what they did, So, these things were always kind of subconsciously going into me. I think it’s just hard work is the big thing. Don’t be scared of it and, if you have that passion anyway, then you’ll kind of reap the benefits.

Claudia: There’s that quote, I’m paraphrasing, “the harder you work, the luckier you seem to be.”

Edith: Yeah, I think so. And I think it’s also like I still get REALLY upset when I don’t get stuff. But I guess that’s because I love what I do, and I really want to do it. My mum has this phrase ‘what’s meant for you won’t pass you by.’ So, at the time it’s like heart breaking but the next day you find a way of going ‘ahh, ok, I’ll find something else.’

Claudia: So, as someone who does create this community around you through your output of work, is that something that you’re missing most?

Edith: Human contact. I’m a hugger as well. You know, whether it’s like one of my best mates or someone I’m interviewing for the first time. I really, really miss it. Really.

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Claudia: So, you’re obviously passionate about music and about film, other than Fame Academy have you had any forays into making film or music yourself?

Edith: No. I can’t play the piano, can’t play an instrument. I can’t read music and I wish I could. I remember when I joined Radio 1 Andy Parfitt, who was the boss at the time, got me the most insane welcome present which was a piano lesson from Chris Martin. Which was hilarious and I can’t even remember what he taught me. Terrible.

Claudia: I think there’s some people that are just enjoying a bit of the stillness and just leaning into that and other people whose brains are so active that they need to be learning something.

Edith: I think I’ve found a kind of place in the middle because what I think it has done is it’s made me kind of slow down a bit and appreciate being outside and being with the kids But also, has made me push ahead with a few things. Like this YouTube thing has been something that we’ve been talking about for a while. It was kind of nice to gently be pushed into something.

Claudia: What is, in your mind, the best soundtrack to a TV series or boxset that you can think of?

Edith: Oh wow. Recently, there’s some really good ones. Succession, Nicholas Brittell’s score for Succession is extraordinary. Devs _which has just been on BBC, it’s brilliant. But then old school stuff, I like stuff like _Dallas. You know? TV theme tunes, there’s a difference between a theme tune and then a good score for a series.

Claudia:

And my current obsession, Normal People, the music in that. You did something on your podcast?

Edith: Oh god yes. I had Lenny Abrahamson who’s the director. And his regular composer Stephen Rennicks, who he’s worked with across all his projects so Room with Brie Larson and The Little Stranger with Domhnall Gleeson and Frank with Michael Fassbender – he’s worked with him across them all. But this was the first time where he had Stephen do the score, but he had a lot of existing music. Lenny was brilliant to chat to; I mean that series was just extraordinary wasn’t it?

Claudia: So, I wanted to ask you as well a bit about your personal style. I always think you’ve got quite an Annie Hall vibe; do you know what I mean?

Edith: I love that! That’s a huge compliment. Diane Keaton I love, I think she’s just like amazing. And Annie Hall, the sort of styling in that tomboyish-ness with the sort of tie and shirt and stuff. Yeah, I love a suit, I’ve got so many suits. And I kind of like, it’s weird, I would say in the last year or two is probably where I’ve felt most comfortable with my style if that’s what you can call it.

Watch our full interview with Edith and take a peek into some of her favorite pieces from THE OUTNET on our Instagram. And, catch up with Edith’s podcast Soundtracking.

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