There's nothing quite like winning an award. Recognition, especially from your peers, is perhaps the best feeling you can get in your career – apart from a pay hike, of course. That's the exact feeling Stephanie Economou must have felt when she won the award for Best Score Soundtrack for Video Games and Other Interactive Media for the score of Assassin's Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok at the 65th Grammy Awards,
Economou was nominated for the award along with Austin Wintory for Aliens: Fireteam, Bear McCreary for Call of Duty: Vanguard, Richard Jacques for Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, and Christopher Tin for Old World. What makes this win even more special is that this is the first time that the Grammys have dedicated a category for video games.
Unfortunately, despite the game winning such a prestigious – and inaugural – award, the presenter, comedian Randy Rainbow couldn't quite pronounce its name. Perhaps Rainbow, who was also nominated on the night for best comedy album, was a bit nervous; or maybe just isn't a big fan of Norse mythology, but he ended up giving the award to Assassin's Creed "Vallaha". Of course, any one of us could have made that error, but it's still quite funny.
"I was thrilled to be able to do it, but truly I am—as the people in our videogame community would say, such a noob when it comes to video game scoring," said Economou about the win, in a conversation with Billboard (thanks, PC Gamer). "It's tough to be nominated against these literal giants in video game music. I'm so honored to be in their company, but also there's a bit of like, do I belong here? And I think most artists sort of feel that to some extent, but I'm really honored and I'm really proud of the score."
As for the score itself, Dawn of Ragnarok takes a sharp turn from the exploits of Eivor in Viking-era England, and instead focuses on the journey of Havi, a.k.a Odin, through the nine Norse realms. Economou went with a black metal score that's hard hitting, with vocals by Einar Selvik, the drummer for Gorgoroth.
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