As the nominees for the 61st Emmy Awards were announced on July 16, a slew of BMI composers came to fully understand a ubiquitous adage: It truly is an honor just to be nominated.
Premier British composer Rachel Portman (PRS) garnered a nod in the Outstanding Music Composition for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special (Original Dramatic Score) field. A true groundbreaker, Portman was the first woman to ever win an Academy Award for Best Original Score—an honor she earned in 1996 for Emma.
BMI composers dominate the Outstanding Music Direction category. Rickey Minor garnered a nod for his work on the 51st Annual Grammy Awards; Rob Mathes and Rob Berman were tapped for their work on The Kennedy Center Honors; and William Ross was nominated for his musical direction of Streisand: The Concert. Multi-talented Minor is also the music director for ratings-king American Idol, while producer and composer Rob Mathes has also created arrangements for a jaw-dropping collection of stars including Lou Reed, Bono, Eric Clapton, Elton John, Luciano Pavarotti, Tony Bennett, Natalie Cole and Lyle Lovett. Berman is also an esteemed conductor whose résumé includes conducting and the musical supervision of numerous Broadway productions and the Encores! series at City Center. A serial award-winning composer, arranger, and conductor, Ross has written scores for a variety of mediums, including feature films Ladder 49, Tuck Everlasting, Tin Cup, My Fellow Americans and many more.
Ross also received a nod in the Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics field for the original music he created for Hugh Jackman’s opening number during the 81st Annual Academy Awards. Ross’s Academy Award ceremony collaborators and fellow nominees include John Kimbrough (original music) and Rob Schrab (original lyrics). A frequent musical contributor to NPR’s This American Life, Kimbrough has also composed for award-winning independent film projects. Schrab is a writer, director, producer and comedian whose work includes The Sarah Silverman Program for Comedy Central.
BMI composer Katreese Barnes also garnered a nomination in the Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics category. Barnes was the sole composer of the music for “I Love Sports,” featured during the 2008 ESPYS. Barnes claimed the Emmy in the same field last year for Saturday Night Live’s “D*ck in a Box.”
Iconic composer John Williams earned a nomination in the Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music field in recognition of his new theme music for the PBS series Great Performances, now in its 36th season. David Michael Frank’s theme for ABC’s The Mole also garnered a nod, marking Frank’s fourth career Emmy nomination. Former Tripping Daisy front man and current leader of The Polyphonic Spree Tim DeLaughter also received a nomination for his theme for Showtime’s United States of Tara.
The Emmy Awards will be presented Sunday, September 20 live on CBS. For more information and a complete list of 2009 nominees, please visit www.emmys.com.