Fri. Sep 18th, 2020

Lady Gaga, Nicholas Britell and Hildur Guðnadóttir big winners at 19th World Soundtrack Awards

Hildur Guðnadóttir (Photo credit: Johannes De Bruycker)

Nicholas Britell chosen as Film Composer of the Year; Hildur Guðnadóttir is Television Composer of the Year; Lady Gaga wins Original Song for “Shallow” from A Star Is Born

For the 19th year in a row,  the World Soundtrack Awards were announced during the 46th Film Fest Gent, which ran from October 8 – 18. The World Soundtrack Awards place an emphasis on the oeuvres of special contributors to the world of film music. This year’s winners are Nicholas Britell, Hildur Guðnadóttir, Lady Gaga, Frédéric Vercheval, Michael Abels, John Powell and Pierre Charles. Frédéric Devreese and Krzysztof Penderecki were both honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

After winning the Discovery of the Year Award in 2017, Nicholas Britell took home another award this year: he was named Best Film Composer of the Year by the World Soundtrack Academy for his soundtrack for ‘If Beale Street Could Talk.’ Britell won an Emmy last month for the main title music of the HBO television show ‘Succession.’

The prize for Best Television Composer of the Year went to special guest and Emmy winner Hildur Guðnadóttir, who created the score for the popular HBO series ‘Chernobyl’. Last year, Guðnadóttir was one of the Discovery of the Year nominees for ‘Sicario: Day of the Soldado’. In the meantime, both Britell and Guðnadóttir have made a name for themselves worldwide with their scores for the HBO series ‘Succession’ and Todd Philips’ ‘Joker’ respectively. 

The prize for Best Original Song Written Directly for a Film was awarded to the track ‘Shallow’ from ‘A Star is Born’. This composition was written by Lady Gaga, Andrew Wyatt, Anthony Rossomando and Mark Ronson, and was performed by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper.

African-American composer Michael Abels was named Discovery of the Year for the score he created for Jordan Peele’s ‘Us’. The pair had already collaborated before on the film ‘Get Out’.

In the category of Best Original Score for a Belgian Production, Belgian Frédéric Vercheval was awarded for his score for Olivier Masset-Depasse’s ‘Duelles’. The composer has already been nominated four times for the Magritte Award for Best Original Score for ‘Diamant 13’ (2009), ‘Krach’ (2010), ‘Not My Type’ (2014) and ‘Melody’ (2014).

Young American jazz pianist and composer Pierre Charles won the SABAM Award for the Most Original Composition by a Young International Composer. The Public Choice Award went to John Powell for his music in Dean Deblois’ ‘How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World’.

As previously announced, Krzysztof Penderecki was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award. The Polish composer undoubtedly put his mark on film music history with his innovative and unconventional music. He collaborated with world famous composers such as Stanley Kubrick (‘The Shining’), David Lynch (‘Inland Empire’, ‘Twin Peaks’), Martin Scorsese (‘Shutter Island’) and William Friedkin (‘The Exorcist’).

Frédéric Devreese was also given a Lifetime Achievement Award. In light of his 90th birthday, Brussels Philharmonic honored the father of Belgian film music. Devreese is known for his collaboration with André Delvaux on Palme D’or nominee ‘L’oeuvre au noir’, but also ‘Du bout des lèvres’ (Jean-Marie Degesves) and ‘Les Noces Barbares’ and ‘Il Maëstro’ (Marion Hansëm).

During the award ceremony, compositions were performed live by Brussels Philharmonic, conducted by maestro Dirk Brossé, with accompanying clips on the big screen. Guest of honor this year was Marco Beltrami, known for his horror scores including the ‘Scream’ franchise. He recently composed the music for box office hit ‘A Quiet Place’, nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Score, Netflix’s ‘Velvet Buzzsaw’ and Oscar-winning National Geographic documentary ‘Free Solo’, for which he received an Emmy Award.

19th World Soundtrack Awards Winners

Best Film Composer of the Year
Nicholas Britell (‘If Beale Street Could Talk’, ‘Vice’)

Best TV Composer of the Year
Hildur Guðnadóttir (‘Chernobyl’, ‘Ófærð’)

Best Original Song written directly for a Film
‘Shallow’ (‘A Star Is Born’). Music & lyrics by Lady Gaga, Andrew Wyatt, Anthony Rossomando and Mark Ronson. Performed by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper.

Discovery of the Year 2019
Michael Abels (‘Us’)

Best Original Score for a Belgian Production
‘Duelles’ (Frédéric Vercheval)

SABAM Award for the Most Original Composition By a Young International Composer
Pierre Charles

Public Choice Award
‘How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World’ (John Powell)

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