Revered pop star Madonna has berated a BBC Radio programmer for passing a condescending remark about her new single ‘Living for Love.’ She has accused the Radio house of ‘ageism.’
The programmer reportedly stated that the station would not broadcast the singer’s single in an effort to lower the demographic of its audience. Madonna described the station’s decision as ‘discriminatory and unfair.’
“I was like, 'Wait a second. Shouldn't it have to do with whether you wrote a good, catchy pop song?,’ the singer told The Sun.
“My manager said to me, 'If you're not in your twenties, it's hard. You might get your record played in your thirties. There's a handful of people who do - Pharrell got lucky. But if you're in your fifties, you can forget it'," Madonna said. "I didn't know it was anything to do with my age. I just do my work. We've made so many advances in other areas - civil rights, gay rights - but ageism is still an area that's taboo and not talked about and dealt with,’ she added.
In reaction to the accusation, the BBC had initially dismissed the insinuation that the song being left off the station’s playlist had anything to do with Madonna’s age. "An artist's age is never a factor," the BBC said in a statement.
Contrary to the statement, BBC Radio 1’s head of music, George Ergatoudis was more direct in his reaction; “The BBC Trust have asked us to go after a young audience. We've got to concentrate on 15 – 30 (age bracket). We have to bring our average age down. That's something we're very conscious of he said,” he said.
Ergatoudis, who spoke via the BBC, continued; "The vast majority of people who like Madonna, who like her music now, are over 30 and frankly, we've moved on from Madonna."
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Madonna expressed dissatisfaction over how she’s being constantly judged because of her age, noting there is no difference between racism and ageism.
"It's still the one area where you can totally discriminate against somebody and talk sh#t. Because of their age," she said. "Only females, though. Not males. So in that respect we still live in a very sexist society."
Madonna Louise Ciccone, 56, is known for reinventing both her music and image, and for maintaining her autonomy within the recording industry. Music critics have acclaimed her musical productions which have also been known to induce controversy. Often referred to as the "Queen of Pop", she is cited as an influence among other artists around the world.