Marc Eliot is Founder and CCO (Chief Creative Officer) of swoop, a New York-based design studio for upscale luxury celebrations for weddings, social events, and corporate events alike. swoop is also the exclusive in-house event design affiliate for Cipriani.

In this episode, Marc and Andy discuss what music and design have in common, the importance of “Game Day” improvisation, listening to what a design “wants”, how to get where the clients wants to go even if they can’t express how to get there, the freedom of structure, and more.

Marc discovered a passion for music and as a young man. As a teenager he composed music and entertained as a singer, with a focus on performing standards by greats like Nat King Cole, Dean Martin, and Frank Sinatra. This love of music eventually took him from New York to California in search of fame and fortune, and eventually back to NYC when those remained elusive.

Marc’s involvement in the luxury wedding industry is a happy accident—the result of being asked to work for a floral decorator as a young man. Originally a way to help finance his music career, Marc found a new passion—design. He learned that he loved designing events, producing events, and working with people. This new kind of “performance” fueled a lot of the same passions as music for him, and for some time his music career and design career co-existed, as Marc simultaneously honed his design craft while performing music, releasing albums, and producing shows.

In 1991, Marc founded his own Long Island floral company, Simply Elegant, with two partners and ran it for nine years as its Managing Partner & Creative Director. His growing reputation ultimately led to being General Manager and Creative Director of Floralia Decorators, with an exclusive affiliation at The Waldorf Astoria‘s in-house floral provider.

When not fully immersed in his role at swoop, Marc is an avid composer, crooner, lyricist and writer, and an active member of the world-famous Friar’s Club.