The Society of Composers & Lyricists (SCL) presented two Oscar hopefuls, Son Lux and Diane Warren, awards at the fourth annual SCL Awards at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles on Wednesday (Feb. 15) night. 

Hosted by Darren Criss, who opened and closed the evening with energetic musical performances, the evening’s top winners also included Michael Abels for ‘Nope’ in Outstanding Original Score for a Feature Film, which competed with scores for ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ and ‘Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio.’ 

Darren Criss opens the SCL Awards with a musical number. Photo Credit: Teal Moss

Academy Award nominee Son Lux took the Outstanding Score for an Independent Film for ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once,’ while 14-time Academy Award nominee Diane Warren won Outstanding Song for a Drama/Documentary for her original song “Applause” from ‘Tell it Like a Woman.’ After receiving a standing ovation, the industry veteran who became the first songwriter to receive an Honorary Oscar in 2022 quipped about never winning awards and appeared visibly moved by the standing ovation from her peers. 

Oscar-winning composer Justin Hurwitz and Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle were presented with The Spirit of Collaboration Award. Accompanying the presentation was a musical performance including “Audition (The Fools Who Dream),” from ‘La La Land,’ the ‘First Man’ theme for harp and theremin, and a rousing ‘Babylon’ Medley, which included “Voodoo Mama” and “Herman’s Hustle.” While accepting their award, the frequent collaborators gushed over their love for working together and praised the work of musicians on their projects. 

Damien Chazelle and Justin Hurwitz accept the Spirit of Collaboration Award. Photo Credit: Teal Moss

Filmmaker Guillermo del Toro took the stage with lyricist Roeban Katz to accept 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 Desalt. The acclaimed filmmaker joked his lyrics were so terrible that Desplat called in Katz to help bring the song together, and shared that he had tried to recruit Nick Cave and Beck to write lyrics for the film.

Other winners included Nami Melumad, who became Star Trek’s first female composer with ‘Star Trek: Prodigy’ and won the David Raksin Award for Emerging Talent for ‘Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.’ Stephanie Economou, who received the Emerging Talent award last year, won Best Original Score for Interactive Media for ‘Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarök.’ For the second year in a row, Emmy-winning composer Cristobal Tapia de Veer won Outstanding Original Score for a Television Production for ‘The White Lotus,’ thanking the SCL via a video message from a snow-covered forest — a far cry from the sun-drenched Italy-set second season. 

Finally, the Jury Award was awarded to Michael Abels for ‘Omar,’ an Opera co-composed with Rhiannon Giddens. A second Jury Award was also presented to ‘Women Warriors: The Voices of Change.’

Michael Abels accepts the Jury Award for his Opera ‘Omar,’ co-composed with Rhiannon Giddens. Photo Credit: Teal Moss

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, and newsworthy issues affecting the music for visual media community. For more information, go to