Ellis, Vivian

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ELLIS, VIVIAN (1904–1996), British theatrical composer. Born in London, the son of a tailor, Ellis started as a concert pianist and began composing for musical shows before he was 20. He subsequently contributed music and lyrics to many revues, wrote popular songs, and was the composer for A.P. Herbert's musical plays Big Ben (1946), Bless the Bride (1947), Tough at the Top (1949), and The Water Gypsies (1955). He also wrote humorous books and two volumes of autobiography, Ellis in Wonderland (1939) and I'm on a See-Saw (1953). Ellis wrote many pieces of "light classical" music which have become well-known, such as "Coronation Scot," as well as popular songs like "Spread a Little Happiness."