Berklee Alumni Contribute to Oscar-Nominated Films

Alumni had key roles in the making of Best Picture–nominated films CODA, Encanto, and West Side Story.

February 8, 2022

Five Berklee alumni contributed their talents to five Academy Award–nominated films this year.

Sean Jones B.F.A. ’14, who majored in musical theater at Boston Conservatory at Berklee, starred as the character Action in Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story. The adaptation of the 1961 musical received seven nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Ariana DeBose.

Berklee College of Music was represented by Lena Glikson B.M. ’15, a film scoring graduate who was a music editor on the Will Smith film King Richard, which earned five nominations including Best Picture, Best Actor in a Leading Role, and Best Original Song. Glickson's additional film credits include The Suicide Squad, Joker, A Star Is Born, and Ad Astra.

Alvin Wee B.M. ’13 worked as the score mixer on Disney's Encanto, which is nominated for Best Animated Feature, Best Original Score, and Best Original Song. Wee studied music production and engineering (MP&E) at the college.

Nicholai Baxter B.M. ’07, a graduate of the MP&E program, served as co–music producer for Apple's CODA, which is nominated in three categories including Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay. Baxter’s responsibilities included developing musical repertoire for the film in addition to cowriting CODA’s end-credit original song, "Beyond the Shore,” with director Sian Heder, co–music producer Marius de Vries, and Berklee alumnus Matt Dahan B.M. ’07. A five-time Grammy Award winner, Baxter won two of his Grammys for the La La Land score and soundtrack. He was also a music producer and sound mixer on the Regina King–directed film One Night in Miami… and worked as a music production mixer on 2018's A Star Is Born starring Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga.

Ishaan Chhabra B.M. '10, who majored in electronic production and design, co-scored the music for Writing with Fire, which received a nomination for Best Documentary Feature. 

Alicia Morote M.M. ’16, who earned a master's degree in scoring for film, television, and video games from Berklee's campus in Valencia, Spain, was part of the music soundtrack team for Pedro Almodóvar's latest project, Parallel Mothers, which was nominated for Best Original Score. 

The 94th annual Academy Awards will be held at the Dolby Theatre at the Hollywood and Highland Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 27, and the broadcast will air live on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET.