ASCAP Members Get 70% of Oscar Music Nominations

Nicholas Brittell
Nicholas Britell

Volker Bertelmann
Volker Bertelmann

On the morning of January 24th, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences revealed the 2017 Academy Award nominees, and ASCAP composers and songwriters took 70% of the music categories.

Composers Volker Bertelmann, aka Hauschka (Lion) and Nicholas Brittell (Moonlight) each scored music for critically-acclaimed 2016 films.

Bertelmann previously received a Golden Globe nomination for Lion. Britell, a graduate of the ASCAP/Columbia University Film Scoring Workshop, has received multiple Best Score nominations for his Moonlight music, including 2017 nominations for a Critics Choice Award and a Golden Globe Award. This would be the first Best Original Score Oscar for each composer.

On the song side, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul’s infectious songs for the movie musical La La Land, earned them two Oscar nominations, including one for their Golden Globe-winning “City of Stars.” Justin Timberlake’s massive hit song “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” written with Max Martin and Shellback for Trolls, become one of 2016’s biggest hits. Composer J. Ralph and Sting wrote “The Empty Chair” for the Sundance Audience Award-winning documentary Jim: The James Foley Story, which they performed live at the 2016 Sundance ASCAP Music Cafe. And Lin-Manuel Miranda, on the heels of historic success on Broadway with Hamilton, earned a Best Song nom for “How Far I’ll Go” from Walt Disney’s Moana. Pasek, Paul and Miranda are all graduates of the ASCAP Musical Theatre Workshop with Stephen Schwartz.  

Here’s who we’ll be rooting for on Sunday, February 26th when the 89th Academy Awards ceremony will be broadcast from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles:


Volker Bertelmann (Hauschka)
Read our interview with him about his score

Nicholas Britell


Benj Pasek
Justin Paul
“Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” from La La Land

Max Martin
Justin Timberlake
“Can’t Stop the Feeling” from Trolls
Read our interview with Justin Timberlake about creating the song

Benj Pasek
Justin Paul
“City of Stars” from La La Land
Hear why ASCAP has been important to Pasek and Paul’s careers

J. Ralph
“The Empty Chair” from Jim: The James Foley Story

Lin-Manuel Miranda
“How Far I’ll Go” from Moana