Kamasi Washington has been nominated for the 2020 Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Documentary Series or Special (Original Dramatic Score) for his score for Becoming, director Nadia Hallgren and Higher Ground Productions’ documentary profiling First Lady Michelle Obama. The award will be announced on September 14 during the first night of Creative Arts Emmys presentations. In addition, a performance of the Becoming score from Washington, his band and members of the L.A. Philharmonic live at the Hollywood Bowl will stream on October 30 as part of the orchestra’s ongoing SOUND/STAGE programming.
The score features new original music Washington—whom Hallgren asked to join the project very early in its development—composed for the film as well as selections from his catalog. “Working with Kamasi Washington on the musical score for Becoming was a dream come true,” says Hallgren. “Not only is Kamasi a masterful musician, he also has a unique sensitivity that he pours into his music. His music reaches deeply into your soul. Mrs. Obama loves music, and when I read the line in her book ‘And heaven, as I envisioned it, had to be a place full of jazz,’ I knew immediately Kamasi was the artist that could interpret her experience musically. His sound is contemporary and timeless, a magical fit to her story.”
“It was such a pleasure and honor to work on Becoming,” says Washington. “Michelle Obama is such an amazing person and this film gives a very unique insight to who she is, how she thinks, and the way she navigates the world. It’s truly inspiring to see! Working with the film’s incredible director Nadia Hallgren to create a musical palette to support this amazing piece was truly a blessing. I’m so thankful to her for the opportunity to be a part of this. Barack and Michelle Obama’s time as President and First Lady had an impact on the history of this country and the world that is hard to put into words, but both Michelle Obama’s book and Nadia Hallgren’s film do an amazing job of it!”
Becoming is an intimate look into the life of former First Lady Michelle Obama during a moment of profound change, not only for her personally but for the country she and her husband served over eight impactful years in the White House. The film offers a rare and up-close look at her life, taking viewers behind the scenes as she embarks on a 34-city tour that highlights the power of community to bridge our divides and the spirit of connection that
comes when we openly and honestly share our stories.
1. Shot Out Of A Cannon
3. Take In The Story
4. Southside V.1
6. The Rhythm Changes
7. Song For Fraser
10. Fashion Then and Now
13. Looking Forward
14. I Am Becoming
15. Southside V.2
the score is set to be released on vinyl December 11 via Young Turks Recordings and is available for pre-order today.