Carter Burwell, Ryuichi Sakamoto Win Big at World Soundtrack Awards

November 11, 2016

There are few events as anticipated by the film and TV music community - or as devoted to it - as the annual World Soundtrack Awards in Ghent, Belgium. This year’s ceremony and gala concert, held at Capitole Ghent on October 19th, were as spectacular as any we’ve seen and heard in recent memory.

The night belonged to ASCAP composer Carter Burwell. He was named Film Composer of the Year, partially for his music to Carol and Anomalisa, which also earned the Public Choice Award and Best Original Song awards, respectively. Japanese film music master Ryuichi Sakamoto was on hand to accept a Lifetime Achievement Award, and perform excerpts of his beloved scores to Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence, The Last Emperor and Snake Eyes.

The evening was gilded with powerful orchestral/choral performances of today’s best TV music, including scores by ASCAP composers and international affiliates David Carbonara (Mad Men), Murray Gold (Dr. Who), John Lunn (The White Queen), Daniel Pemberton (Upstairs, Downstairs), Michael Price (Sherlock) and Max Richter (The Leftovers). A lucky audience heard the world première of the score for Roots by Alex Heffes, and excerpts of the score for British miniseries Parade’s End, composed by Maestro Dirk Brossé, who conducted the Brussels Philharmonic and Flemish Radio Choir all night. The program also included a listen back at the thrilling music of TV series from our youth, from Dallas to Star Trek.

The WSA ceremony and concert capped off an entire week of film music magic at the Ghent Film Festival. ASCAP Film/TV staff and numerous high-profile composer members participated in panels, seminars and concerts throughout the festival:

  • “Industry Panels” featuring ASCAP’s Jenn Harmon, plus ASCAP-licensed composers Dirk Brossé, Karsten Fundal, John Lunn, Daniel Pemberton and Ryuichi Sakamoto
  • A live score from Belgian composer Gwenaël Grisi (SABAM/ASCAP), accompanied by a screening of Yasujirô Ozu’s 1932 silent film I Was Born, But…
  • A reprise of the World Soundtrack Awards concert, this time for the public, with the addition of ASCAP scores from Bill Conti (Dynasty) and Angelo Badalamenti (Twin Peaks)


Congratulations to all of our World Soundtrack Awards winners. We can’t wait ‘til next year!

Lifetime Achievement Award

Ryuichi Sakamoto 

Public Choice Award

Carol by Carter Burwell

[Click here to read our interview with Burwell about Carol)

2016 Film Composer of the Year

Carter Burwell

Anomalisa, Carol, Hail, Caesar!, Legend, The Family Fang, The Finest Hours

Best Original Song Written Directly for a Film

“None of Them Are You”

from Anomalisa

music & lyrics by Carter Burwell

Best Original Score for a Belgian Production

Cafard by Hans Helewaut (SABAM) 

SABAM Award for Best Young International Composer

Sándor Török