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[B]The [URL=http://www.britishacademy.com]British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA)[/URL] has opened its prestigious Ivor Novello Awards to game composers, a move that highlights the growing sophistication and influence of interactive composition. It's also a nod to the growing importance of videogames to the music industry.[/B]

Mark Fishlock, a member of the Ivors committee, told [URL=http://technology.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/tech_and_web/gadgets_and_gaming/article6991720.ece]The Times UK[/URL] that gaming's increasingly ambitious scores and the unique challenges of composing interactive music made the medium impossible for the committee to ignore:

[INDENT] The Ivors has always sought to reflect the ever-changing world of songwriting and composing. The videogames market has matured beyond recognition and big budget orchestral scores are regularly being commissioned.

Writing music for games also requires a number of specialist skills compared with conventional film scoring, such as non-linear and multi-layered composition.

[/INDENT] That's hardly news to [URL=http://www.richardjacques.co.uk/]Richard Jacques[/URL], who's written music for dozens of videogames, including [I]Headhunter[/I], the [I]Jet Set Radio[/I] series and [I]Mass Effect[/I]. Jacques is also a member of BASCA's Media Executive Committee.

[INDENT] This shows gaming music is coming of age. A good score has the same quality as a film soundtrack. But it’s very different because in games you are creating a musical dynamic that pre-empts the story and reacts to what the characters are doing.

[/INDENT] The Novello committee is seeking nominations to the new category ahead of its awards ceremony in May. The score to any commercial game released last year is eligible.


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