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Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga’s Powerhouse ‘Shallow’ Performance Is the Oscars MVP

The standout track from "A Star Is Born" is the frontrunner to win the Oscar for Best Original Song.

The 2019 Oscars did not have a host, but they did have Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga singing opposite one another for the first time on live television. The Oscar nominees shared the stage to perform “Shallow,” their Oscar-nominated Best Original Song from “A Star Is Born.” As Cooper had warned earlier this month, he took the stage not in character as Jackson Maine to perform the song. Gaga had previously performed the song live at the 2019 Grammy Awards.

The Oscar performance of “Shallow” stared with a bare stage with just a piano and a microphone. Cooper and Gaga were sitting in the audience and stood up and walked up to the stage. Captured in a single take, the camera framed the two from behind looking out at the audience, similar to how Cooper directed “A Star Is Born.” Both Cooper and Gaga’s vocals were on point and the performance ended with them in close-up while sitting next to each other at the piano.

“Shallow” became the instant anthem of “A Star Is Born” the minute it was featured prominently in the movie’s first and only theatrical trailer, which Warner Bros. released June 6. The track was released as the soundtrack’s lead single on September 27, the week before the movie was released in theaters. “Shallow” was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America in January for selling over a million units.

Earlier this month, “Shallow” won two Grammy Awards: Best Pop Duo/Group Performance and Best Song Written for Visual Media. The song was also nominated in top categories Record of the Year and Song of the Year. The award win for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance is given to the performers, which means “Shallow” netted Cooper the first Grammy of his career. Despite multiple nominations over his career, he has yet to win an Academy Award.

“A Star Is Born” earned eight Academy Award nominations this year. In addition to Best Original Song, the film earned nominations for Best Picture, Best Actor for Cooper, Best Actress for Gaga, Best Supporting Actor for Sam Elliott, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Cinematography.

“Shallow” has earned numerous song prizes this awards season, including trophies from the Golden Globes and Critic’s Choice Awards. Additional nominees in this year’s Best Original Song category included “I’ll Fight” from “RBG,” “When A Cowboy Trades His Spurs For Wings” from “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” “All the Stars” from “Black Panther,” and “The Place Where Lost Things Go” from “Mary Poppins Returns.”

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