Sufjan Stevens enlisted the help of St. Vincent, Moses Sumney and the Punch Brothers’ Chris Thile for a haunting, intimate performance of his Oscar-nominated song “Mystery of Love” at the 90th Academy Awards Sunday. Stevens wrote the song for Luca Guadagnino’s Call Me By Your Name.
Stevens, decked out in a pink-striped suit with Asian appliques and an oversized black bowtie, quietly crooned and strummed an acoustic guitar, with his all-star backing band joining in on vocal harmonies. Thile picked out a delicate mandolin melody, while St. Vincent and Sumney added subtle washes of electric guitar.
“Mystery of Love” vies for the Best Original Song Oscar alongside “Remember Me” from Coco, Common and Diane Warren’s “Stand Up for Something” from Marshall, Mary J. Blige’s “Mighty River” from Mudbound and “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman.
The song marks Stevens’ first Oscar nomination. The singer-songwriter also penned another original song for the movie, “Visions of Gideon,” and co-wrote the score for Call Me By Your Name with Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto. Stevens released his last solo album, Carrie and Lowell, in 2015.