Skip to Content

The Ivors 2020 Winners Announced

The Ivors Academy has announced the winners of The Ivors with Apple Music, celebrating the very best songwriting and screen composition of 2019.

Recognised as a pinnacle of achievement since they were first presented in 1956, an Ivor Novello Award celebrates exceptional craft in music creation and is particularly important to the music industry as it represents peer recognition.

This is the 65th year Ivor Novello Awards have been presented at The Ivors, the ceremony dedicated to honouring songwriting and screen composition. Originally taking place in May, the presentation of awards was postponed to September due to Covid 19. The winners were announced exclusively on The Matt Wilkinson Show on Apple Music 1 Radio.

Listen again to the winners being announced and explore the winning songs and scores on Apple Music.

The winners

‘Grey Area’, written by Little Simz and Inflo, won the Ivor Novello Award for Best Album. This is Little Simz’ first Ivor Novello Award and the second for Inflo, who previously won in 2017 for co-writing Michael Kiwanuka’s ‘Black Man in a White World’.

The award for Best Contemporary Song was presented to Dave and Fraser T Smith for ‘Black’. Their second Ivor in as many years, the judges described the work as “important, eloquent and a song that not only empowers, but is borderless in its musicality”.

Bobby Krlic collected his first Ivor for Best Original Film Score for the score to ‘Midsommar’, hailed by the judges as an “outstanding incidental score that is an inseparable part of the uncompromising vision of the film”.

Presented for only the fifth time, the Ivor Novello Award for Best Original Video Game Score was awarded to Simon Poole for ‘Draugen’. A first-person psychological ‘Fjord Noir’ mystery set in Norway, the judges described the video game’s score as “flawless and beautifully evocative”.

Jamie Cullum collected his first Ivor for ‘Age of Anxiety’ in the Best Song Musically and Lyrically category, with the judges describing the song as “beautifully emotive, with an exceptionally crafted melody”.

The award for the Best Television Soundtrack was awarded to Labrinth for his soundtrack to ‘Euphoria’, HBO’s teen drama starring Zendaya about a group of high school students navigating love and friendship. It is Labrinth’s first win for scoring screen music and second Ivor, having previously won for co-writing Tinie Tempah’s ‘Pass Out’.

‘Giant’, performed and written by Calvin Harris and Rag ‘n’ Bone Man, with co-writing by Jamie Hartman and Troy Miller, was awarded the PRS for Music Most Performed Work of 2019. Tackling topics such as addiction and redemption, it is the first Ivor win for Rag ‘n’ Bone Man, Jamie Hartman and Troy Miller and the second for Calvin Harris.

Songwriter and artist Mysie won the first Rising Star Award with Apple Music. Created to honour young talent who demonstrate exceptional potential, the award includes a new mentoring scheme from Apple Music where all five nominees receive a year-long mentorship from a well-established Academy member.

The Ivor Novello Award for Songwriter of the Year has been presented since 1974 and recognises a writer whose creativity has made an identifiable impact on the award year. This year’s recipient is songwriter Steve Mac, who co-wrote some of 2019’s stand out hits including Mabel’s ‘Don’t Call Me Up’ and ‘Mad Love’, ‘South Of The Border’ by Ed Sheeran featuring Camila Cabello and Cardi B, Westlife’s ‘Hello My Love’ and ‘Better Man’ and ‘Harder’ by Jax Jones and Bebe Rexha.

An Academy Fellowship, the highest honour that The Ivors Academy bestows, recognises excellence and impact in the art and craft of music creation. This year has seen it awarded to Joan Armatrading MBE, in recognition of her peerless and enduring achievements in music. This is only the nineteenth Fellowship that the Academy has awarded in its 76-year history, as Joan Armatrading joins a roster of songwriting greats including Annie Lennox OBE, Sir Paul McCartney and Sir Elton John.

Annie Lennox OBE, who was made a Fellow of the Academy in 2015, said “Joan Armatrading was born to create beautiful music, as she has done so consistently over the decades of her life, as an outstanding singer songwriter, recording artist and performer. With her definitive voice and unique guitar playing style, her songs are masterful classics. She is a legendary British artist who thoroughly deserves to be recognised and honoured with an Ivors Academy Fellowship. I’m thrilled to know that she will soon be part of this incredible association.”

Joan Armatrading’s four decades of superlative music-making has seen her release 21 albums, receive three Grammy nominations and become the first female British artist to debut at number 1 in the Billboard Blues chart.

Crispin Hunt, Chair of The Ivors Academy said “The Ivors 2020 is a stunning rollcall of songwriting and screen composing talent. I would like to congratulate every winner and nominee on their incredible achievements. The UK produces some of the most dynamic, creative and successful music creators in the world working across games, TV, film and recorded music. Their talent is the reason that the music we all love exists. Each Ivor Novello Award is unique as it is presented to music creators by music creators on behalf of the Academy and is an expression of our admiration.”

The winners in full

Best Album
Grey Area
Written by Inflo and Little Simz
Performed by Little Simz
Published in the UK by Universal Music Publishing

Best Contemporary Song
Written by Dave and Fraser T Smith
Performed by Dave
Published in the UK by Warner Chappell Music and Kobalt Music Publishing

Best Original Film Score
Composed by Bobby Krlic
Published in the UK by A24 Music – Kobalt Music Publishing

Best Original Video Game Score
Composed by Simon Poole

Best Song Musically and Lyrically
Age of Anxiety
Written and performed by Jamie Cullum
Published in the UK by Sentric Music Ltd

Best Television Soundtrack
Composed by Labrinth
Published in the UK by Universal Music Publishing

PRS for Music Most Performed Work
Written by Calvin Harris, Jamie Hartman, Rag ‘n’ Bone Man and Troy Miller
Performed by Calvin Harris and Rag ‘n’ Bone Man
Published in the UK by EMI Music Publishing, Reservoir Reverb Music, Warner Chappell Music and Bucks Music Group

Rising Star Award with Apple Music
Presented to Mysie

Songwriter of the Year
Presented to Steve Mac

Academy Fellowship
Presented to Joan Armatrading MBE


Back to top