Killen med Skillen – David Tolley on The Tonight Show


On December 19, 1985, David was just another guy in the “Tonight Show” studio audience when Johnny Carson said, “Horatio Gutierrez (a classical pianist) couldn’t come tonight because he accidentally shut his hand in a car door and didn’t want to chance playing the Tonight Show. Can anybody here play the piano?” David volunteered; he played “Memory” (from the Cats musical). The next day, David got tons of phone calls — everything from playing on cruise ships to acting in movies. Since then, David’s career has gone up and down.


David wasn’t born on a piano bench, but he was only five years old when he began showing signs of musical talent. His mother, Elizabeth, quickly started him on piano lessons in their home town of Dublin, Ohio, where David grew up with his five brothers and two sisters.

David graduated from Worthington High School and Fort Hayes Performing Arts School. He then attended Ohio State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Theory and Composition, and a second degree in Piano Performance. David also has a Master of Music degree in Composition, and two years of Doctoral work in Composition, all at Ohio State University, USA.

David has performed at the White House, written and recorded music for Euro Disney and other corporate clients, and recorded nine albums.


David is the Associate Professor of Music Composition, Recording/Production and Music Industry at Delaware State University. Between teaching he performs regularly throughout the country. David lives in Powell, Ohio, with his wife Camar and their children Hilary, Christofori, Christina, and Cosette. They all share the house with one baby grand piano and a recording studio.



Vilken grej!

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