On February 15, the Society of Composers & Lyricists (SCL) presented the winners of the 4th Annual SCL Awards for score and songs in visual media at the Skirball Cultural Center. The evening was hosted by Darren Criss, who also gave the audience a musical performance. Awards were presented across seven categories for music in visual media, in addition to the Spirit of Collaboration Award and two Jury Awards.
The Spirit of Collaboration Award was presented to Oscar-winning composer Justin Hurwitz and Oscar-winning filmmaker Damien Chazelle. The composer and filmmaker have collaborated on 5 films including Babylon, La La Land, Whiplash, First Man, and Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench. The presentation of the award was accompanied by a musical performance including “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” from La La Land, the First Man theme for harp and theremin, and a Babylon medley, including “Voodoo Mama” and “Herman’s Hustle.”
Also nominated for both Best Original Song and Best Original Score in the forthcoming Oscars, Ryan Lott accepted the award for Outstanding Score for an Independent Film for Everything, Everywhere, All at Once on behalf of Son Lux. (Look for Below the Line‘s interview with Lott soon.) Additionally, Michael Abels accepted the award for Outstanding Original Score for a Feature Film for Nope as well as the Jury Award for the opera he co-composed with Rhiannon Giddens, Omar. A second Jury Award was presented to Women Warriors: The Voices of Change.
In the song categories, Diane Warren, who became the first songwriter to receive an Honorary Oscar in December 2022, accepted her award for Outstanding Original Song for a Drama or Documentary for “Applause” from Tell It Like a Woman, which is also nominated for Best Original Song in the upcoming Oscars. Additionally, filmmaker/lyricist Guillermo del Toro and lyricist Roeban Katz accepted their award for Outstanding Original Song for a Musical or Comedy for “Ciao Papa” from Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, written by Katz, del Toro, and Alexandre Desplat.
Nami Melumad, who co-composed Thor: Love and Thunder with Michael Giacchino and became Star Trek’s first female composer with Star Trek: Prodigy, won the David Raksin Award for Emerging Talent for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. Stephanie Economou, who received the first ever David Raksin Award at last year’s ceremony, won Best Original Score for Interactive Media for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarök. Also a back-to-back winner, Emmy-winning composer Cristobal Tapia de Veer won Outstanding Original Score for a Television Production for White Lotus for the second year in a row.
Past SCL Awards winners who went on to win Oscars include Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste for Soul; Hildur Guđnadóttir for Joker, Hans Zimmer for Dune, and Billie Eilish and FINNEAS for No Time To Die.
The Society of Composers & Lyricists (SCL) is the primary organization for professional film, television, video game, and musical theater composers and lyricists. With a 78-year history in the art of creating music for visual media, members include the top creative professionals working today. The organization is focused on education and addressing the creative, technological, legal, newsworthy issues affecting the music for visual media community.
For more information, go to TheSCL.com.
4th SCL AWARDS 2023 – Winners in Bold (* Denotes a 2023 Oscar Nominee)
OUTSTANDING SCORE FOR A STUDIO FILM
Michael Abels – Nope
Alexandre Desplat – Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
*Carter Burwell – Banshees of Inisherin
Michael Giacchino – The Batman
John Powell – Don’t Worry Darling
OUTSTANDING SCORE FOR AN INDEPENDENT FILM
*Son Lux – Everything Everywhere All At Once
Leo Birenberg, Zach Robinson – Weird: The Al Yankovic Story
Sharon Farber – Brainwashed: Sex-Camera-Power
Rob Simonsen – The Whale
Mark Smythe – The Reef: Stalked
OUTSTANDING SONG FOR A MUSICAL/COMEDY
Alexandre Desplat, Roeban Katz, Guillermo del Toro – “Ciao Papa” from Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
Khiyon Hursey, Sukari Jones, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, Mark Sonnenblick – “Good Afternoon” – Spirited
Danny Elfman – “Light the Match” from Central Park
Billy Eichner, Marc Shaiman – “Love is Not Love” from Bros
Weird Al Yankovic – “Now You Know” from Weird: The Al Yankovic Story
OUTSTANDING SONG FOR A DRAMA/DOCUMENTARY
*Diane Warren – “Applause” from Tell It Like a Woman
Taylor Swift – “Carolina” from Where the Crawdads Sing
*Lady Gaga, BloodPop – “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick
*Tems, Rihanna, Ludwig Goransson, Ryan Coogler – “Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross – “(You Made It Feel Like) Home” from Bones and All
OUTSTANDING SCORE FOR TELEVISION
Cristobal Tapia de Veer – The White Lotus
Nicholas Britell – Andor
Siddhartha Khosla – Only Murders in the Building
Bear McCreary – The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
Theodore Shapiro – Severance
OUTSTANDING SCORE FOR INTERACTIVE MEDIA
Stephanie Economou – Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarök
Nainita Desai – Immortality
Bear McCreary – God of War Ragnarök
Winifred Phillips – Jurassic World Primal Ops
Christopher Wiliis – Cat Burglar
DAVID RASKIN AWARDS FOR EMERGING TALENT
Nami Melumad – Star Trek: Strange New Worlds
Dara Taylor – The Invitation
Anna Drubich – Barbarian
Deandre James Allen-Toole – God’s Country
Esin Aydingoz – Simchas and Sorrows