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Indigenous American Oscar Nominee Scott George Overcomes Hurdles to Showcase Osage Tradition: Shine At Oscars 2024 With 'Killers of the Flower Moon' Performance

At the 2024 Oscars, Indigenous American Oscar nominee Scott George captivated audiences with a poignant performance showcasing Osage tradition alongside tribal singers. Despite 'Killers of the Flower Moon' missing out on Oscars, the spotlight on Osage culture illuminated the event.

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Osage Performers At Oscars 2024 Photo: Getty Images
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Scott George delivered a compelling performance alongside the Osage Tribal Singers at the 2024 Oscars on Sunday, March 10. Together, they showcased "Wahzhazhe (A Song for My People)," the nominated song from the film "Killers of the Flower Moon."

A sequence from the Martin Scorsese-directed movie set the stage for the performance, transitioning to a wide shot capturing a sizable drum with nine tribal musicians rhythmically playing it. Surrounding the drum in a circle were 19 singers and dancers. The stage was illuminated by a red backdrop with a prominent glowing sun at its center, around which all the musicians gathered.

Osage Performance At The Oscars Photo: Getty Images
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Scorsese and the audience enthusiastically rose to their feet, applauding the brief yet powerful performance with fervor, reflecting the celebratory essence of the nominated song.

George, the first Native American to receive an Oscar nomination for Best Original Song, revealed in a recent interview with Billboard that the most significant hurdle during the "Flower Moon" process was submitting the song for Oscar consideration.

“None of our music is written down,” he shared. “It’s all held on to by memory. But one of the [Oscar] submission requirements was that it would be in a written form. And I just happen to know a person that took that on several years back as part of his education … And so he used that recorder that you got to take home in elementary school to find all the notes and write it all out. Within three to four days, he had it finished, and we got it submitted in time.”

In the category of Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song), George competed against Diane Warren with "The Fire Inside" from "Flamin’ Hot," Mark Ronson and Andrew Wyatt with "I’m Just Ken" from "Barbie," Jon Batiste and Dan Wilson with "It Never Went Away" from "American Symphony," and Billie Eilish and Finneas with "What Was I Made For?" from "Barbie."

Billie Eilish and Finneas ended up winning the Best Original Song award for their Barbie ballad "What Was I Made For?", making Oscar history for becoming youngest two-time Oscar winners in history across any category.

At the Oscars, renowned for both its cinematic excellence and fashion statements, it was the attire of the Osage performers that left a lasting impression on attendees.

Osage Performers At Oscars 2024 Red Carpet Photo: Getty Images
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During the red carpet roll call alongside other celebrities, the Osage singers and dancers were photographed wearing traditional Native American attire, characterized by vibrant colors, intricate prints, and lively embellishments. The women donned mid-length skirts or full-length brocade dresses paired with indigenous shawls adorned with brightly patterned borders draped over their shoulders. Long dangling earrings and beaded necklaces served as their chosen accessories.

The men opted for dark-toned suits accented by contrasting colored bolo ties and wide-brimmed hats. Some wore patterned longline shirts complemented by neckerchiefs and brooches. A few individuals chose to accessorize their attire with high feathered headdresses.

Osage Singers And Dancers Photo: Getty Images
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Despite receiving 10 nominations, 'Killers of the Flower Moon' experienced disappointment at the Oscars as it failed to secure any wins. Yet, the film was successful in casting a spotlight on the Osage Nation, a Native American tribe from the Midwest.

The movie centers on the Osage murders of the early 1900s, a period referred to as the "reign of terror" for the community. It's uplifting to witness the Osage tradition grace the red carpet, proudly showcasing their Native American heritage through their attire.

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