Wet Leg and Harry Styles have been honoured with top Ivor Novello awards during a ceremony that also featured a live performance from Ivors fellow Sting.
The ceremony, at Grosvenor House in London – now in its 68th year, saw 30 songwriters and composers collect awards across 14 categories spanning music, film, TV and video games.
Isle of Wight indie rock duo Wet Leg scooped the songwriter of the year award less than two years on from their first live gig, with judges praising Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers’ writing as “fresh, unapologetic and direct” with “surprising melodies that demand attention”.
The long-time friends formed the band in 2019 with their debut single – Chaise Longue – racking up millions of streams and their second, Wet Dream, enjoying similar success after release in September in 2021, before winning two Grammy awards and two Brit awards in 2023.
Meanwhile pop superstar Styles, who enjoyed a standout 2022 featuring number ones and a sellout world tour, secured his third Ivors gong for his song As It Was, which won most performed work alongside his song writing partners Kid Harpoon and Tyler Johnson.
Don’t Worry Darling, the thriller which featured Styles and Florence Pugh directed by Olivia Wilde, also won best original film score for John Powell during the event on Thursday.
The ceremony also saw The Police star Sting become the 23rd musician to receive a fellowship, the organisation’s highest honour, and inducted in its 79-year history – joining the likes of Sir Paul McCartney, Kate Bush, Joan Armatrading, Peter Gabriel and Sir Elton John.
The 71-year-old performed live with a rendition of the classic track Message In A Bottle, alongside Matilda Mann, who performed a cover of Blondie’s Heart Of Glass in recognition of Debbie Harry and Chris Stein, who won the special international award in celebration of their “outstanding career and influence”.
Raye also performed her hit Escapism following her win for best contemporary song which judges praised as “daring, brave and empowering” during the ceremony which also saw pop “trailblazer” Charli XCX win the visionary award in recognition of “the massive impact her musical vision has made on her fellow songwriters”, judges said.
Florence + The Machine secured best song musically and lyrically for track King which discusses frontwoman Florence Welch’s conflict between choosing her career and starting a family, while best album went to singer-songwriter Cleopatra Nikolic, better known by her stage name Cleo Sol, record producer Inflo (Dean Josiah Cover), Jamar McNaughton and Jack Penate for their mysterious musical collective Sault titled 11.
Tom Gray, chair of The Ivors Academy, said: “On behalf of The Ivors Academy of songwriters and composers I wholeheartedly congratulate all of our winners.
“When we choose to reward one of our number, when we recognise and validate their work, we are saying that as an Ivor Novello award winner, you represent the very best of us.”