The World Soundtrack Academy (WSA, or World Soundtrack Awards), launched in 2001 by the Film Fest Gent, is aimed at organizing and overseeing the educational, cultural and professional aspects of the art of film music, including the preservation of the history of the soundtrack and its worldwide promotion. The event takes place yearly in Ghent, Belgium with the ceremony usually at the Bijloke Concert Hall. Usually, the Brussels Philharmonic performs the awarded music at the ceremony.
Brussels Philharmonic conducted by maestro Dirk Brossé performs fragments from several scores during the awards ceremony at the Kuipke in Ghent. Usually, the winner of the WSAward of Composer of the Year is invited to the ceremony's next edition to perform a concert with his music.
Seminars for and with film music professionals, colloquia and concerts are also being organized next to the gala evening. There are also CD releases (with live concerts by Hans Zimmer, George Fenton and Georges Delerue) and the book Moving Music (by Lannoo - Tielt) that was published in 2005, in response to 20 years of film music at the film festival. In 2007, the CD series For the Record was launched, to shed light on the works of composers who had already performed at the festival. Hitherto, this series is made up of CDs by Craig Armstrong (2007), Mychael Danna (2008), Angelo Badalamenti (2009), Shigeru Umebayashi (2010), Gabriel Yared (2011) and Cliff Martinez (2014).
The festival is praised as one of the first cultural organizations to turn the spotlight on film music, which gave it the status of a pioneer. It has built up a strong reputation by organizing concerts, such as the very first concert of music by Hans Zimmer.
2015 WSA (Alan Silvestri, Daniel Pemberton), Great British Film Music
2014 WSA (Cliff Martinez, Dan Romer, Francis Lai, Jef Neve), Chaplin's The Circus, Concert Nino Rota
2013: WSA (Alexandre Desplat, Riz Ortolanoi), Scoring for Scorsese, The 7th Heaven Live by Kevin Toma, 40 Years of Film Fest Gent
2012: WSA (James Newton Howard, Pino Donaggio), 007 in Concert, The B-Movie Orchestra, Ennio Morricone Concerto
2011: WSA (Hans Zimmer, Elliot Goldenthal, Howard Shore, Giorgio Moroder), Maestros of Suspense (Bernard Herrman, Franz Waxman)
2010: WSA (Angelo Badalamenti, Howard Shore, Gustavo Santaolalla, Stephen Warbeck, Craig Armstrong, Elliot Goldenthal), John Barry Tribute Concert, Koyaanisqatsi in Concert
2009: WSA (Alexandre Desplat, Marvin Hamlish, Marc Streitenfeld), Shigeru Umebayashi, Divine Féminin: Alexandre Desplat en het Traffic Quintet, Jef Neve
2008: WSA (Dario Marianelli, Angelo Badalamenti, Tuur Florizoone), John Williams Tribute Concert, Folk Music in Film (Kadril), Clint Mansell in Concert, Gabriel Yared - A Tribute to Anthony Minghella
2007: WSA (Mychael Danna, Evanthia Reboutsika, Harry Gregson-Williams), Alberto Iglesias in concert, Gustavo Santaolalla
2006: WSA (John Powell, Michael Giacchino, Peer Raben), Craig Armstrong Film Works, Harry Potter Meets Wim Mertens (John Williams, Patrick Doyle, Wim Mertens)
2005: WSA (Rachel Portman, Jerry Leiber en Mike Stoller, Gustavo Santaolalla), Polish Composers in Concert (Zbigniew Preisner, Wojciech Kilar, Jan A.P. Kaczmarek, Bronislau Kaper, Christopher Komeda e.a.)
2004: WSA (Elmer Bernstein, David Raksin, Michael Kamen, Wim Mertens), Jerry Goldsmith Tribute Concert, The Lord of the Rings Symphony in Six Movements (Howard Shore)
2003: WSA (Patrick Doyle en Hooverphonic), Raymond van het Groenewoud
2002: WSA (Fenton-Delerue: A Film Music Celebration), As Time Goes By: Roby Lakatos, Jizo And Other Concert Works By Film Composers, Yann Tiersen in Concert
2001: WSA (Gabriel Yared en Elmer Bernstein), Falling: The Concert featuring Praga Khan
2000: Hans Zimmer Live in Concert, Ennio Morricone Live in Ghent
1999: Film Music at the Opera (Stephen Warbeck, Jean-Claude Petit, Elliot Goldenthal en Frédéric Devreese)
1998: The Birth of a Score II (Michael Kamen, Edward Shearmur, Loek Dikker, Dirk Brossé en Elmer Bernstein)
1997: The Birth of a Score I (Dirk Brossé, Frédéric Devreese, Leonard Rosenman en Jean-Claude Petit)
1995: Pietro Mascagni in Concert
1994: A Tribute to Georges Delerue, Classical Music in Film II
1993: A Tribute to Bernard Hermann, Classical Music in Film I
1992: Music from Films by Derek Jarman (Simon Fisher Turner)
1991: Michael Nyman in Concert
1989: Film Music in Europe (Frédéric Devreese, Dirk Brossé, Nicola Piovani, Peer Raben, Stanley Myers en Lukas Karitinos)
1988: A Night of Great Film Music (Frédéric Devreese, Georges Delerue, Bruce Broughton, David Newman en Jean-Claude Petit), Toots Thielemans Film Music Concert