Alexandra Patsavas (‘Bridgerton’ music supervisor) on putting a classical spin on pop music [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW]

“This was a wonderful project to be a part of,” declares Alexandra Patsavas, the music supervisor of Netflix’s “Bridgerton.” The period drama about finding love in 19th century London has become one of the most popular shows of the season, thanks in part to its music, which often features reimagined versions of contemporary hits. In an exclusive video interview with Gold Derby (watch above), the Grammy-nominated producer discusses the challenges of putting a classical spin on modern pop music.

Patsavas is no stranger to working with executive producer Shonda Rhimes having worked as music supervisor on “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” and many other “Shondaland” shows. With “Bridgerton,” Patsavas describes the unique challenge of bridging the worlds of contemporary and classical music. “It is very interesting to think about making sure that the musical character of ‘Bridgerton’ is inviting, is contemporary, but it is fitting for the period,” she explains. I think that the idea of instrumental covers of current iconic pop songs was something that we talked about before the first episode was shot.”

The series includes a number of current pup songs reimagined as classical compositions, including “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish, “Thank U, Next” by Ariana Grande, and “Girls Like You” by Maroon 5. Many of those covers are performed by the Los Angeles-based group, Vitamin String Quartet, a group with whom Patsavas was quite familiar. “A string instrument is the closest thing to the human voice,” she says. “I really think those kinds of performances can be so exquisite and so emotional.” Patsavas says she was not expecting the audience’s reaction to VSQ, which saw their streaming numbers increase a whopping 350 percent. “It’s super rewarding to understand that they have new fans as a result of ‘Bridgerton,'” she exclaims.

Working on the series proved challenging on non-musical levels as well thanks to the Covid pandemic. Patsavas describes having to do post-production work on the series via zoom separate from her collaborators . “This was my first experience of being in a room this way– in a zoom room, watching the cut,” she explains. However, she also believes that the show’s quality comes across, pandemic or no pandemic. “I just think it’s so good,” she exclaims. “It’s entertaining. It’s cheeky. It’s uplifting.”

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