Nationally recognized as a leader in the field of youth chorus directors, Ms. Ellsworth has served has Artistic Director of Anima - Young Singers of Greater Chicago since 1996. Under her direction, Anima has won several national awards, including the 2013 ASCAP award for Adventurous Programming from Chorus America, the 2013 Tribute Award from Chicago A Cappella, the once-in-an-organizational lifetime Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence from Chorus America (2008), and the 2009 Dale Warland Singers Commissioning Award jointly given by the American Composers Forum and Chorus America for Nico Muhly’s How Soon? with Grammy winning contemporary chamber ensemble eighth blackbird.
Ms. Ellsworth additionally serves as Lecturer in Choral Conducting at Northwestern University, where she conducts the University Singers. She is the advisor for the Opera Workshop choral series with Boosey & Hawkes publishers, has served several times on the music panel of the National Endowment for the Arts, and has over 20 years of singing and teaching experience as a voice faculty member in various college and university settings. She has served the American Choral Directors’ Association as the Central Division Repertoire and Standards Chair for children and Community Youth Choirs, as is a long standing member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing.
In great demand as a guest clinician and conductor, Ms. Ellsworth has conducted all-state choirs and festivals in over 25 states, as well as for the Northwest, North Central, and Southwest divisions of ACDA. She has conducted featured performances at national conferences of ACDA, the Organization of American Kodaly Educators, and Chorus America. She has prepared various ensembles within Anima for Chicago’s major musical organizations, including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Chicago Bach Project, Grant Park Symphony, Ravinia Festival, Music of the Baroque, Chicago Sinfonietta, and many others. Ms. Ellsworth has prepared Anima for performances with the Berlin Philharmonic, concert tours to six continents, eight CD recordings, and featured broadcasts on WFMT. She has served as guest conductor at festival performances in Carnegie and Avery Fisher Halls; Wexford, Ireland; England’s Wells Cathedral; the Cultural Center in Hong Kong, and given presentations for the national association of choral directors in Brazil.
Ms. Ellsworth holds the Artist Teacher certificate from the Choral Music Experience Choral Teacher Training Institute, and the Master of Music degree with honors from the Thornton School of the University of Southern California.