Susan Ellis BMus, MMus, GradDipEd


Susan Ellis was awarded the Kornfeld Graduate Scholarship for Singers as well as a scholarship to study at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester where she also undertook a teaching fellowship with Robert Alderson on the teaching of young men. She studied Italian in Florence and has studied at the Goethe Institute.

Susan studied with Anthea Moller and coaches regularly with Opera Queensland’s Head of Music Narelle French and New York based Josh Hecht.

As a concert soloist, Susan has performed with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and the Zhejiang Symphony Orchestra in China.

In Canberra she has appeared in recital for ANU, Pro Musica, Llewellyn Choir, Canberra Symphony Orchestra, Friends of Opera, Canberra Choral Society, RMC Band Music at Midday, National Museum, Gallery and Library of Australia, Art Song Canberra as well as the Finnish, New Zealand, English and Austrian Embassies.

In 2004 Susan joined Opera Queensland as a Developing artist and a member of the Moving Opera! Team and then in 2005 to 2008 was a young artist and then principal artist with the company. Throughout this time she appeared in many concerts such as Breakfast with Bernstein, Mozart and Moonlight and Fantasie in the Gardens with the Brisbane Army Band for the 4MBS Festival of Classics, Opera from the Veranda and the ENERGEX Brisbane Festival Lunchtime Cabaret Concert Series. The City Hall 75th Anniversary Concert, Opera in the Cane fields (Beenleigh), Opera at the Rock (Ipswich), Opera in the Rainforest, (Sunshine Coast), Speed on Tweed (Murwillumbah), Summertime (QPAC), and Opera in the Outback (Undara) where she performed the role of Violetta in a semi-staged version of La Traviata also recently reprised for 2006 Opera at the Rock and 2007 for the opening of the Majestic Theatre. In addition, she understudied the roles of Miss Jessel in the Company’s production of The Turn of the Screw and Rosalinde in their touring production of Die Fledermaus in which she also performed the role of Ida. Susan toured throughout Central and Western Queensland in the concert production of The Food of Love.

Other operatic roles have included Anna Glawari in Lehar’s Merry Widow, Rosalinde in Strauss’s Die Fledermaus, Fiordiligi in Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte, Madam Silvertones in Mozart’s Impresario, Geraldine in Barber’s Hand of Bridge, The Plaintiff in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial By Jury and Mrs Grose in Britten’s Turn of the Screw. Her Oratorio work includes, Monteverdi’s Vespers, Vaughn William’s Serenade to Music and Hodie, Handel’s Israel in Egypt, and Saul,Vivaldi and Rutters, Gloria, CPE Bach and Bach’s Magnificat. In October 2009 Susan performed Bach and Mendelssohn works with Llewellyn Choir.

In 2010 Susan joined the Griffyn Ensemble as the vocalist of the group, following a guest appearance with the ensemble in 2009. With the ensemble, she has performed in the Canberra International Chamber Music Festival in 2011 and 2012 and for the National Gallery's Ballet Russes exhibition as well as regular touring with the ensemble. The ensemble enjoy a reputation as, an innovative new music chamber ensemble, releasing their first CD in December 2011. This year, the ensemble is touring three of their shows through NSW and Victoria and premiering many works in 2013 through the Canberra Centenary Celebrations and Musica Viva.

Susan will be performing with "Underground Opera" Company (a company that specialises in performing un unique locations) in October and November 2012.

Susan has conducted the Canberra Singers for Pleasure, Burgmann Anglican Schools Chamber Choir, the Orana School of Steiner Education High school choir and was a founding executive director of Canberra's highly acclaimed Opera Company Stopera. Susan has a love of teaching and has from 1999 taught students at the Australian National University, School of Music, University of Southern Queensland, Burgmann Anglican School, Orana and the Young Music Society. She currently teaches Voice at Moreton Bay College in Brisbane.

She formed the group Mosaic Vocal Ensemble which debuted in 2006 and have just enjoyed a successful sold out fundraising concert for Arthritis ACT. Her professional vocal group AVID (Australian Voices in Demand) launched "those girls" at CAPO 26 Art Auction.

Susan is passionate about vocal coaching and used this skill in Opera Queensland’s Moving Opera! Workshops. Susan coached the Australian National University vocal ensemble in many performances and Qwire for their world premiere of True for the Sydney Gay Games and consequently their rework for the Paris Festival. From 2005 to 2008 Susan provided vocal consultation to the TSO chorus for their performance of Beethoven 5 and Tchaikovsky’s 1812 overture and their many Galas. Susan currently has a Professional Association with the Austrian Australian Choir funded by Arts ACT and has been invited to tour with them in 2013 throughout Europe.