Greta Salóme

In recent days, Iceland’s male Eurovision stars have given state broadcaster RÚV a proper tongue lashing. As you may recall, Friðrik Ómar openly criticized the newly introduced rule for Iceland’s Eurovision selection, which called for 50% gender equality among composers and songwriters. Paul Oscar joined Friðrik on the subject, screaming that the rule was “demeaning for women”.

Well there’s been another bender in this debate over gender. RÚV has officially bumped the gender rule off the table. Great news for all supporters of equality….both men and women, right?

NO! Greta Salóme, Iceland’s one and only female composer ever to make it to the big stage at Eurovision, has spoken out on her Facebook page, saying she was all for the quota.

I’ve been following the debates for some days now, and the headline: “Demeaning for women” caught my attention.  I personally think that there are many other things that are way worse than a gender quota for composers in Eurovision.  The new rule is not something I think has any decisive influence on women creating music.  But they’ve changed their mind and ditched the rule, so everybody can sleep soundly tonight. Or can we?

She went on to explain how men dominate Iceland’s music scene. Apparently the Channel 2 radio station only has 11 women in management (there are 33 men in similar roles). And 90% of funding for music shows is awarded to male artists and producers rather than women.

Many of Iceland’s elite song goddesses agree with Greta—and rightfully so. In the almost 30 years of Iceland participating in ESC, Greta Salóme remains the only woman to be calling the shots on stage.

Was it the right decision to set a rule like this? Or did RÚV do the right thing by removing it from the handbook? Let us know below. And then enjoy this encore performance of Greta singing in Baku.

Photo: Greta Salome 

You can follow all of our Iceland Eurovision 2015 news here.

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[…] sein. Nach Protesten der sich bedroht fühlenden Männer zog der Sender aber den Schwanz ein und kassierte die Regel wieder. Zu den Beschwerdeführern zählte Friðrik Ómar Hjörleifsson, der 2008 […]

Alex
Guest
Alex

I just checked, and it’s not true that Greta is the only woman to be credited as a composer on an Icelandic ESC track… see Anna Mjoll in 1996, Selma in 1999 and Hera Bjork in 2010 at least. Greta was, however, the only composer in 2012.

Nikos
Guest
Nikos

If it is so concerning to Greta how many women are composing songs why doesn’t she ENCOURAGE women to compose rather than FORCE them to?

Vladimir
Guest
Vladimir

While I agree with Greta that there are far more demeaning things for women, I do not think these quotas should exist. Also, Greta’s assessment of funding for music shows sounds like an accusation that funding has been being awarded to the producers and artists only because they’re men and NOT because they deserve it. That is very strong accusation and I really hope she has some proofs for this claim.

Dani Moti
Guest
Dani Moti

Oh well, now Greta recquires girl power. Not to mention she dumped her female colleagues in the National Final of 2012 to support her other entry with Jonsi..so she did not think then her loyalty to women. Give me a break!

Jake
Guest
Jake

Why didn’t the selecting community just pick half of the songs to be picked by women and not make a big deal out of it…the fact that they made a big deal out of it brought attention to it

Charles
Guest
Charles

Despite this “men’s world” issue, Greta Salóme is actually right about other things being far worse than this gender issue … regardless of who composes what, from a listener’s point of view I am always far more concerned with the true quality of what is musically delivered. I cringe at bad taste/cheesy/tacky stuff created for Eurovision whose only purpose is to entertain … it’s a competition, be serious about it. If I want easy and cheap entertainment, I’ll ask my dog … With great music coming from Iceland, I’ll ask Greta to come up with one epic composition … and… Read more »

nancyp
Guest
nancyp

i’m kind of shocked there has only ever been ONE woman to compose for iceland. they NEED these quotas it sounds like!