Brandon Ethridge is a pianist, producer, composer, music director and a Broadway musician. He is known to us as the talented pianist who accompanies well-known scenes from movies or viral videos on the piano, giving his own dimension to the spoken words, proving that sometimes music is stronger than spoken language alone. He calls these videos “Mini Musicals.” Brandon finds the exact pitches and rhythms of the spoken words and plays them on the piano, creating the illusion that the person on the screen is singing instead of merely speaking. His Mini Musicals have gathered 14 million views on YouTube and TikTok.
1. How did you start playing piano? What fascinates you about it?
In pre-school, my teachers noticed that I spent a strange amount of time in the corner, playing a toy glockenspiel. The teachers encouraged my parents to buy a piano and find a piano teacher for me. Piano was so easy for me as a child, I hardly needed to practice in order to satisfy the teachers, so I spent more time working on my soccer skills instead. Nevertheless, when it came time to go to college, a music professor heard me perform at a school piano recital, and he immediately offered me a fulltuition scholarship. If that particular professor had not been at that particular recital, I would probably be an engineer instead of a musician today.
2. What was the trigger for you to start these Mini Musicals?
The idea to make Mini Musicals came from someone else. An old New York friend posted a funny video on Facebook and said, “To my composer friends: please make music for this video!” I took the challenge and uploaded the result to YouTube, and 2.5 million people watched it. To reach so many people is absolutely thrilling, so I never stopped.
3. What effect does emotionally charged dialogue have on the rhythm?
The emotions of the dialogue do not affect my rhythmic choices. In my work, the
emotions affect the tempo, loudness and my choice of harmonies, especially the
choice whether to play in a major or minor key. That said, sometimes it’s hilarious
when the person on screen is screaming in rage, and I’m playing light, upbeat, happy music on the piano.
4. How much influence do you think music can have on a person’s psychology?
Some of my Mini Musicals are based on disturbing events, and my fans have often
told me that my music helped them to cope with their negative emotions caused by
5. We saw that some musicals were about Covid-19. Does difficult subject matter sabotage the inspiration of the artist or do they inspire him/her more?
Difficult subject matters definitely provide me with more inspiration!
6. What are your goals/dreams for the future?
I am currently adapting my Mini Musicals so that I can perform them live. I will be at
a piano, in front of a big screen. I hope to take this on the road. There’s nothing more fun than playing music live.
7. Apart from the amazing musicals you create, can anyone find you anywhere else artistically?
I have a Queen tribute band that tours the world. Our singer sounds exactly like
Freddie Mercury. In fact, if you saw the movie Bohemian Rhapsody, you’ve already
heard his voice. You can find our tour dates here:
And to see my Mini Musicals, please use this link: