Elizabeth is the founder and Artistic Director of Ensemble Laude. She hails from Victoria, Canada, where she was trained both as a pianist and vocalist. After graduate studies in musicology at the University of Victoria, Elizabeth’s love of Early Music took her to England and then France, for six years, where she worked as a soloist and taught school choirs.
Upon her return to Canada in 1996, she joined the music faculty of the Victoria Conservatory of Music, and Brentwood College School in Mill Bay. Her choirs and orchestras at Brentwood College achieved provincial and national accolades. Ensemble Laude and her sister choir Encanta won first and second prize at Kathaumixw in 2012. In the same year, MacIsaac was awarded the BCCF Herbert Drost Award for ‘Distinguished service and support of choral music in B.C’.
Profoundly committed to new music projects, MacIsaac has had the pleasure of commissioning and premiering numerous new compositions by contemporary composers, most of them Canadian, including Dorothy Chang, Linda Bouchard, Sarah Quartel, Kathleen Allen, Nicholas Fairbank, Andrea Young, David Loeb, Hyo-Shin Na and John Abram, among many others. She is currently Assistant Conductor for the University Chorale at the University of Washington where she is studying for her DMA in Choral Conducting under Geoffrey Boers and Giselle Wyers.
Carolyn Howe is Ensemble Laude’s Assistant Director. Elizabeth MacIsaac is undertaking her doctorate in Choral Conducting in Seattle at the University of Washington and returns to Victoria to work with Laude singers every other week. To help carry the load, Carolyn Howe brings her talent as a director, warm personality, and beautiful singing voice to the choir.
Carolyn Howe received her Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance from the University of Victoria, and has long been an active member of Victoria’s music community. In 2006, Carolyn joined Hexaphone, a collaborative chamber ensemble of six voices, specializing in unaccompanied repertoire sung one voice to a part. Highlights of her work with Hexaphone included performing in the Victoria Symphony New Currents Festival of Music, at the Voice ++ Festival at Open Space, premiering BC 150 Project: Five Songs For BC, and winning the Elmer Iseler Prize in 2012 at the International Choral Kathaumixw.
From 2006-2014, Carolyn was choral director of the Mood Swing Chorus for the Friends of Music Society, a partnership program for people with mental illness and members of the wider community. In addition, she is recognized as an outstanding children’s music educator. Since 2005 Carolyn has been the music teacher at South Park Elementary, a fine-arts-focused school in Victoria, where she teaches a general music program, and directs two award-winning children’s choirs.
Georgina Craig grew up in rural Oxfordshire, England. She developed an interest in composing while studying under Derek Hyde at Canterbury Christ Church University. After obtaining a first class honours degree in Music and English Literature, she went on to complete a postgraduate performers course at Trinity College of Music, London, where she studied voice under Elizabeth Hawes and John Kitchener. In 1998, Georgina completed a postgraduate certificate of education from the University of Reading and went on to teach high school music.
From 1999 to 2004 Georgina was a voice and flute specialist teacher for the North Somerset County Music Service. During this time she was able to indulge her passion for composing and arranging while working with a variety of youth ensembles. She was a member of the all-female vocal ensemble Lyrica, which performed several of her arrangements and compositions. Georgina also performed in the ensemble Kantando where she arranged many folk songs for guitar and voice.
In September of 2005 Georgina moved to Canada with her young family. Here she had a private teaching practice in Calgary, worked as an early years’ educator and was a member of the award winning Spiritus Chamber Choir and the professional choir Luminous Voices.
Georgina currently lives on Vancouver Island and is a community outreach teacher for the Victoria Conservatory of Music. She is also a member of Ensemble Laude and a published composer.
Photo Credits: Ute Muller © 2013, 2014