The 2022 Oscars will feature an eclectic, all-star band consisting of blink-182 drummer Travis Barker, percussionist and singer Sheila E., pianist Robert Glasper and the show’s music director Adam Blackstone. Will Packer and Shayla Cowan, who are producing this year’s Oscars, announced various musical elements on Friday (March 18).
DJ D-Nice, whose virtual Club Quarantine parties over the past two years have boosted his profile, will perform on the March 27 telecast and also at the Governors Ball, the official post-Oscars celebration. The Samples, a vocal group led by Jason White, will also appear on the telecast.
With the show’s return to the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood after last year’s pandemic-prompted move to Union Station in Los Angeles, the show will have an orchestra for the first time in two years. The orchestra will be joined this year by what the Oscars are calling D-Nice and the All-Star Band.
On Wednesday, the Oscars also announced the first live performance of “We Don’t Talk About Bruno,” the surprise hit from Encanto. The Oscars have yet to formally announce that the best original song nominees will return to the main telecast – after being relegated to a “pre-show” last year – but such a move is widely expected.
If the Oscars are able to book all of the original performers – and they are the Oscars, after all — Sebastián Yatra would perform “Dos Oruguitas,” also from Encanto; Beyoncé would perform “Be Alive” from King Richard; Van Morrison would perform “Down to Joy” from Belfast; Billie Eilish would perform No Time to Die from the film of the same name; and Reba McEntire would perform “Somehow You Do” from Four Good Days.
Music could also factor into a planned salute to 60 years of James Bond. Dame Shirley Bassey sang “Diamonds Are Forever” to open the BAFTA Film Awards on March 13, as that show’s salute to the Bond franchise. That still leaves “Goldfinger,” perhaps the greatest of all Bond theme songs (also sung originally by Bassey), for an Oscar telecast salute.
Several music stars, including Shawn Mendes, Sean “Diddy” Combs, and Halle Bailey, have been announced as presenters, along with music and film superstar Lady Gaga.
This is Blackstone’s first year as music director for the Oscars. Questlove was the music director on last year’s show, but he is a nominee this year. He directed Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised), which is nominated for documentary (feature).
Rickey Minor was music director and conductor on the Oscars in 2019-20. Harold Wheeler was music arranger and conductor from 2016-18.
Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes are set to host the 94th Oscars, which will air on ABC on Sunday March 27 at 8 p.m. EDT/5 p.m. PDT and in more than 200 territories worldwide. Tonight (Friday, March 18), from 6:30 to 8 p.m. PDT, D-Nice will host the official Oscars Club Quarantine pre-party, with special guests, via Instagram Live (@dnice and @theacademy).