Elise discovered a love for singing at an early age when her mom enrolled her in singing lessons. Moms always knows best and this would be the start of Elise’s passion for music and foster an emergence from her quiet shell. In 2005, a family move to Burlington, Ontario introduced Elise to the Hamilton Children’s Choir under the leadership of the inspirational Zimfira Poloz. This is where she caught the “choral bug” and was inspired to live a life dedicated to the arts. This spark led her to complete her Honours Bachelors in Music, and Diploma in Voice Performance at McMaster University, and in 2017, her Masters in Choral Conducting from the University of Toronto.
Elise is quickly establishing herself as a conductor who is innovative, dynamic and a strong advocate for women in the arts. As the founder and Artistic Director of Myriad Ensemble, a women’s choir based in Burlington Ontario, Elise has established a niche for working with women’s voice and crafting a sound that is ubiquitous, rich in colour and full of life. With Elise’s leadership and vision, Myriad is committed to raising the voices of women through the collaboration, exploration and performance of women’s choir repertoire.
She is also the Conductor of the Hamilton Estonian Choir (HESS). In July of 2019, Elise and HESS traveled to Tallin, Estonian as Canadian representatives at the Estonian Song Festival. In 2021, Elise was recognized for her work as an emerging conductor, winning a St. Catharines Arts and Culture award as an Emerging Artist.
As a young conductor, Elise has had the privilege of learning from some of the world's most respected choral leaders including Dr. Hilary Apfelstadt, Jon Washburn, Michael Zaugg and Zimfira Poloz. However, it is her years apprenticing with the esteemed Robert Cooper, CM that influenced and shaped the artistic leader and person she is today. Elise will be forever grateful to Bob for the tough lessons, deep life conversations, and the fountain of knowledge and wisdom he graciously imparted to her.
Elise has been privileged with many conducting opportunities as: Associate Conductor of Orpheus Choir of Toronto, Associate Conductor of Chorus Niagara, Apprentice Conductor of the 2016 and 2018 Ontario Youth Choirs under the highly regarded Robert Cooper, CM (2016) and Vancouver Chamber Choir’s Jon Washburn (2018), the Assistant Conductor of the U of T Women’s Chamber Choir under Dr. Hilary Apfelstadt and as a Rehearsal Assistant to Zimfira Poloz with the Hamilton Children’s Choir and Young Voices Toronto.
In addition to conducting, Elise is currently pursuing her MBA in Innovation Leadership through the University of Fredericton, as well as full time as the Managing Director of Chorus Niagara.
Myriad is Elise’s passion project. What started as a group of friends singing together in the summer quickly turned into something much larger. Myriad had their inaugural concert in 2017 as guests of Burlington’s finest community orchestra, Symphony on the Bay, and they have been bringing choral music to Burlington ever since. The women of Myriad are more than just singers to Elise. They are her sisters in song and in life, and it is her honour to lead this fine “myriad” of women as they create memories and music together!