“There is something truly special about the sound of a Steinway. There is a warmth and complexity, a sense of musical possibility. I have found that only a Steinway can bring into reality the music I am feeling.”
Nicholas Britell is an Academy Award-nominated composer, pianist, and producer. His critically-acclaimed score for Barry Jenkins’ Oscar-winning film MOONLIGHT was nominated for the 2017 Oscar for Best Original Score and was awarded the 2016 Hollywood Music in Media Award for Best Original Score (Dramatic Feature). In addition, his score for MOONLIGHT garnered numerous other accolades including a 2016 Golden Globe nomination and a 2016 Critics’ Choice nomination. In October 2017, Britell was awarded the “Discovery of the Year” Award at the World Soundtrack Awards in Ghent, Belgium, as well as the Distinguished Composer Award from the Middleburg Film Festival.
Britell recently composed the score for Barry Jenkins’ film IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2018. IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK will screen at the Apollo Theater as part of the New York Film Festival before opening in theaters on November 30th, 2018.
In 2015, Britell wrote the score for Adam McKay’s Oscar-nominated film THE BIG SHORT, based on Michael Lewis’ book about the housing and credit bubbles of the 2000’s and the subsequent 2008 financial crisis. He has since re-teamed with McKay to score VICE starring Christian Bale as Dick Cheney, as well as scoring McKay’s critically-acclaimed HBO television series SUCCESSION. His music was also featured in director Steve McQueen’s Oscar-winning film 12 YEARS A SLAVE, for which he composed and arranged the on-camera music including the violin performances, spiritual songs, work songs, and dances.
Britell is a Steinway Artist and is a Founding Member of L.A. Dance Project. He is also Chairman of the Board of the New York-based ensemble Decoda, the first-ever affiliate ensemble of Carnegie Hall. He was awarded the Henry Mancini Fellowship from the ASCAP Foundation in December 2012 and also won the ASCAP/Doddle Award for Collaborative Achievement.
As a producer, Britell produced the short film WHIPLASH, directed by Damien Chazelle, which won the Jury Award for Best US Fiction Short at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. After the initial success of the WHIPLASH short, he subsequently served as co-producer on the Oscar-nominated feature film WHIPLASH which also won Sundance’s 2014 Jury Prize and its Audience Award.
As a pianist, for the past seven years, he has been performing as part of the critically acclaimed “Portals” project with violinist Tim Fain. Britell has been performing for audiences from a very young age, giving his first public recital at the age of 10 and was a student of the late Jane Carlson at the Juilliard School. His recent public performances have included concerts at London’s Barbican Hall, the Million Dollar Theatre in Los Angeles, and at Chicago’s Ravinia.
Britell is an honors and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Harvard University, as well as a piano performance graduate of the Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division. Britell was honored to be the commencement speaker at the Juilliard Pre-College Division’s Commencement Exercises in May 2016.