Ranking the Best Song performances at the 2024 Oscars from the least to the most impressive

Since 1984, it has been a tradition for the songs nominated for Best Original Song at the Oscars to be performed live during the awards ceremony each year. Whether that be Cynthia Ervio singing Stand Up or Lin-Manuel Miranda performing Dos Orugitas, the live performance of these incredible songs is always something to look forward to. This year, we saw a performance of five songs. In this article, I will personally rank this year’s performance from worst to best.  

5. It Never Went Away (American Symphony) performed by Jon Batiste 

Now maybe I live under a rock, but, I mean, has anyone even heard of this song or movie? I was like, wait what? Although it was a nice enough song, I found the performance to be extremely weak. It’s not a song I’d listen to again, and to be perfectly honest, I don’t even remember much about the performance, and I think that speaks for itself…  

4. The Fire Inside (Flamin’ Hot) performed by Becky G with a special appearance from Crozier Middle School’s choir 

Yet another song I’d never heard of…  I also found the performance to be extremely short for some reason? I’m not sure if it’s just because the song in itself is short or if it’s because Becky G was going for a “short but sweet” kind of vibe, but either way, I just feel that she could’ve done much more with the song and that her performance could’ve overall been stronger! But bringing on the little girls onto the performance? So cute! That was definitely the highlight for me and probably the main reason she’s 4th instead of 5th.  

3. Wahzhazhe, A song for my people (Killers of the Flower Moon) performed by Scott George and the Osage Singers 

I personally thoroughly enjoyed this performance. I thought it was a strong song and it was nice to get an insight into another culture. It was also a nice change for once, as it wasn’t the classic type of songs we normally hear. It was nice to not only have a song in a different language/dialect but also to see a performance that portrays and represents a different culture. It was gratifying to see that the Oscars are becoming more inclusive and diverse!  

2. What was I made for (Barbie) performed by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell 

The night’s big winner… this song is just WOW WOW WOW. Now I know there has been some backlash on the performance, just because she’s always still and doesn’t really move, but personally, I think this makes sense. She’s not still because she feels like it, she’s still because it’s a metaphor for a doll. I mean it’s a song for Barbie… she is trying to be Barbie… get it? I also think that having Finneas play the piano was an amazing touch, but also having him back up and harmonize with her in certain parts of the song? So smart! I just think it was by far one of the best performances and songs and definitely deserves to be in the top scoring! 

1. I’m Just Ken (Barbie) performed by Ryan Gosling with a special appearance from Slash 

The best moment in the Oscars… whether it’s using cardboard cutouts of Barbie, gripping onto the cameraman’s hand, having Emma Stone do karaoke or having Slash as a guest appearance, this performance will go down in Oscar history. From stage presence and performance to props, Ryan Gosling sure brought his A-game to the stage! I mean what other actor can get the entire room to sing along with him? Yes, maybe the song isn’t the best out of all of the nominees, but you must admit that performance? Out of this league! 

By Leonor Amaral