Post image for Music: ALAN & MARILYN BERGMAN LYRIC AWARD (ASCAP Foundation)

by Connor McCormick on September 28, 2022

in Film,Music

Alan Bergman and his late wife, Marilyn, wrote lyrics for film, stage and television for more than five decades, which earned them multiple Emmys, Grammys and three Oscars for “The Windmills of Your Mind,” “The Way We Were” and the score for Yentl. The ASCAP Foundation Alan and Marilyn Bergman Lyric Award is a new program established by the award-winning songwriting team, with a $5000 award presented to a songwriter or lyricist who is at the early stages of their career, and whose quality of lyrics, music and overall style reflect the craftsmanship of Great American Songbook composers and lyricists. The Songbook includes popular standards of the early 20th century as well as contemporary songs that are driven by strong melodies, catchy lyrics, clever rhymes and enduring sentiments.

Writing primarily for films, the Bergmans received 16 Oscar nominations in total. In 1983 alone, the prolific team netted three nominations for the Academy Award for Best Song: “How Do You Keep the Music Playing?” (from Best Friends), “If We Were in Love” (from Yes, Giorgio), and “It Might Be You” (from Tootsie). In television, the pair wrote the theme songs for classic hit series Maude, Good Times and Alice.

Marilyn Bergman was the first woman elected to ASCAP’s Board of Directors and served as ASCAP’s President and Chairman from 1994 to 2009. As a passionate voice for the rights of music creators, she maintained a strong presence on Capitol Hill. She helped lead ASCAP to several major legislative victories, including the Supreme Court’s decision in 2003 to uphold the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998, which extended copyright protection an extra 20 years – to the life of the author plus 70 years. Read more about her extraordinary life here.

The ASCAP Foundation Alan and Marilyn Bergman Lyric Award program is currently accepting nominations. Applicants are judged on the quality of lyrics, strong melody, and music and poetic rhythm. The rules and application process can be found at here. For further info, please email

About The ASCAP Foundation

Founded in 1975, The ASCAP Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to supporting American music creators and encouraging their development through music education, talent development and humanitarian programs. Included in these are songwriting workshops, grants, scholarships, awards, recognition and community outreach programs. The ASCAP Foundation is supported by contributions from ASCAP members and from music lovers throughout the United States. ASCAP.

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