"BIll Elliott's supersized arrangements shook the hall."
- Mark Satola, The Plain Dealer: Cleveland.com
Bill Elliott is an arranger, orchestrator, composer, conductor, and bandleader who has made a specialty of composing, arranging, and producing vintage styles of music. His recent work on Broadway has earned three Tony nominations, including a win for AN AMERICAN IN PARIS in 2015; and two Drama Desk nominations, including a win for BANDSTAND in 2017. He was co-orchestrator for both the 2017 Broadway production of BANDSTAND and the 2015 production at the Paper Mill Playhouse. In 2015 he orchestrated two additional Gershwin musicals: the Chichester (England) Festival Theater debut production of DAMSEL IN DISTRESS and the Encores! revival of the 1924 Gershwin musical LADY BE GOOD. In 2012 he received Tony and Grammy nominations for his work on the Broadway musical NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT (as orchestrator and co-producer of the cast album) and an Emmy nomination as Music Director for Michael Feinstein’s PBS Special “The Sinatra Legacy”. He provided additional orchestrations for the 2013 Broadway production of CINDERELLA and the 2011 Broadway revival of ANYTHING GOES.
Bill Elliott is a prolific arranger for the Boston Pops, New York Pops, and Hollywood Bowl Orchestras, and has recently written orchestra arrangements for Barbara Hannigan, Kelli O’Hara, Sutton Foster, and Josh Groban’s “STAGES” album. He arranged and produced Michael Feinstein’s Grammy-nominated album “THE SINATRA PROJECT” and has toured as Mr. Feinstein’s conductor in the US and England. Since 1993 he has led the 19-member Bill Elliott Swing Orchestra which has performed widely and recorded four CDs. He collaborated with John Lithgow on two albums of orchestra music for children as composer, arranger, conductor, and producer. As music director for Michael Feinstein and John Lithgow, Bill Elliott has conducted the Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Detroit, San Diego, and Vancouver Symphonies among others.
Bill Elliott began his career as a rock’n’roll piano player in the Boston area, performing and recording with such artists as Livingston Taylor, Martin Mull, Jonathan Edwards, and Tom Rush. After moving to Los Angeles, his career as a keyboard player included touring and recording with Bonnie Raitt, Stevie Nicks, Smokey Robinson, Donna Summer, and Bette Midler, among many others. In Los Angeles his career evolved into arranging and producing pop records and then into composing, orchestrating, and conducting for film and television. Bill Elliott’s original songs and arrangements have appeared in many TV shows and films including “NORTHERN EXPOSURE”, “INDEPENDENCE DAY”, “INTRODUCING DOROTHY DANDRIDGE”, “GILMORE GIRLS”, “CINDERELLA MAN”, and “WEDDING CRASHERS”. His extensive work as a composer and arranger for Disney TV movies and home videos includes “RETURN OF JAFAR”, “ALADDIN AND THE KING OF THIEVES”, “TOWER OF TERROR”, “CHILD STAR: THE SHIRLEY TEMPLE STORY”, “ALLEY CATS STRIKE”, “PHANTOM OF THE MEGAPLEX”, “THE THREE MUSKETEERS”, and “BAMBI II”.
In 2004 Bill Elliott returned home to the Boston area and began teaching arranging and orchestration at Berklee College of Music. He has enjoyed getting to know students from all over the world and has seen many former students become successful colleagues in professional work. His return to the east coast also led to new directions in his own career: working prolifically as arranger for the Boston Pops under the direction of Keith Lockhart, and working on Broadway and elsewhere as an orchestrator.