Meet Our Talented Musicians

William Tilley

A native Vermonter, William Tilley began playing double bass professionally at age 17 when he won an audition for the Vermont Symphony. In 1983 he was accepted at the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia where he studied with Roger M. Scott, former Principal Bass of the Philadelphia Orchestra . Upon graduating, he played regularly with a variety of ensembles, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Pennsylvania Ballet and The Opera Company of Philadelphia.

During his nine years as an alternate with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Bill worked with the majority of the world’s leading conductors, including Sergiu Celibidache, Leonard Bernstein, Wolfgang Sawallisch and Ricardo Muti, Daniel Barenboim, Georges Pretre and Eric Leinsdorf. His international career includes tours with the Philadelphia Orchestra to Europe, South America, Mexico and North America. He has appeared at the Salzburg Music Festival, the BBC Proms, and the Lucerne Music Festival. In addition, he has recorded a number of CDs with the Philadelphia Orchestra on the EMI label.

In 2002, Bill returned to Vermont where he plays with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, has played several concerts for the Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival with such artists as Edward Aaron and Peter Wiley and continues his work in Philadelphia. A passionate teacher, Bill established “The Wahnfried Studio” in Charlotte, which teaches all entry-levels of bass as well as historically informed performance practice, chamber music coaching, and vocal technique. His students consistently win auditions for major music schools including the Manhattan School, Peabody Conservatory and Eastman School of Music. Bill has taught at Champlain College and in 2011 was invited to be the teacher of double bass at the University of Vermont. Bill plays on a rare Venetian double bass made in 1760 by Domenico Busan which he is responsible for having meticulously restored and modernized.