Danielle Merlis is a New York City based film composer and cellist. As both a composer and performer, her music spans traditional and contemporary styles including classical, world, electronic, pop, and jazz. Danielle has composed music for numerous films and documentaries, including The Kidnapping of a Fish (Philip A. Ramos and That Storm Films), which was accepted into Cannes Film Festival, The Tokyo Lift Off Festival, The New York City International Film Festival, and The Big Island Film Festival. Danielle is currently composing genre tracks for ABC, which are used for shows such as Good Morning America, 20/20, and Nightline.
She strives to create an authentic sound palate. After a recent trip to Mongolia, Danielle composed an original score featuring Mongolian instruments such as the horse-head fiddle and throat singing for a documentary, Rootless (Xue Yue), which was featured in the Margaret Mead Festival.
Danielle earned her Master’s Degree in Scoring for Film and Multimedia at New York University. Her teachers have included the renowned composers Ira Newborn (Ferris Bueller’s Day off, Sixteen Candles, Ace Ventura), Mark Suozzo (American Splendor, The Nanny Diaries), and Pedro da Silva (How to Seduce Difficult Women). Danielle has also studied songwriting with Phil Galdston, composer for artists ranging from Celine Dion to Beyoncé. In 2015 Danielle was selected to participate in the prestigious SCL (Society for Composers and Lyricists) Mentorship program in New York City led by Chris Hajian (The Infiltrator, The Little Rascals Save the Day) and Mark Roos.
Danielle has won numerous awards and competitions for her cello playing. She was invited to perform with the Norwalk Symphony as a featured soloist with renowned jazz musician Chris Brubeck and his band Triple Play. She also performed with Glenn Frey at Town Hall to promote his solo album After Hours and with the entire Eagles band at the Beacon Theater.
Danielle studied music at the Manhattan School of Music, Boston University's Tanglewood Institute, McGill University’s Schulich School of Music, in addition to New York University's Steinhardt school. She earned her bachelor's degree in cello performance under the instruction of Matt Haimovitz and Marion Feldman. Danielle has performed as a soloist, orchestra member, chamber musician, and band member at various venues including Avery Fisher Hall, Carnegie Hall, The Beacon Theater, Ozawa Concert Hall, Town Hall, CAMI Hall, The Shed at Tanglewood, Joe’s Pub, Lowe Theater, Provincetown Playhouse, and the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts.