Film Fest Gent to honour video game soundtracks with special concert

Film Fest Gent to honour video game soundtracks with special concert
Credit: Film Fest Gent

Film Fest Gent will honour video game soundtracks in a special concert – called PRESS PLAY: Music in Game – on 19 October 2023 in Ghent. The new WSA Game Music Award for the best original score for a video game will be presented in addition to the concert.

Video game music in 2023 has evolved into its own genre. It sets the tone of the scene and allows the players to fully immerse themselves in the game. Music plays a vital role in guiding the story in the virtual world.

The first official guest and host will be Austin Wintory – whose music will be featured at the concert. The composer is best known for his music in the video games Journey and Assassin's Creed Syndicate. Wintory's soundtrack made history in 2013 when Journey was nominated for a Grammy in the Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media category. His soundtrack was the first to receive a Grammy nomination for a video game.

"I have long admired what happens in Ghent every year at the World Soundtrack Awards, and it was a privilege to be a guest in 2021. It is a dream to return as host for this concert, to celebrate the beautiful art form and my many talented colleagues!" Wintory said in a press release.

Credit: Film Fest Gent 

This year, the annual composers' competition is dedicated to Abzû the video game. Abzû is an underwater video game where players can explore the depths of the sea and search for hidden secrets in the ocean and encounter majestic creatures.

Those participating in the competition are tasked with creating a new score for an excerpt of the game Abzû. The name of the game is made of two Sumerian words and together it translates to 'ocean of wisdom'. Participants are asked to showcase their talents by composing a symphonic score to a selected excerpt from the game.

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The jury will select three finalists whose compositions will then be performed by Brussels Philharmonic at the music awards ceremony. The winner of the competition will be awarded the Sabam Award for Best Original Composition by a Young Composer worth €2,500.

The 50th edition of Film Fest Gent will take place from 10 - 21 October 2023 and the 23rd edition of the World Soundtrack Awards will take place 21 October 2023.

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