Trainee Choral Conductor

Caroline Lesemann-Elliott is our trainee choral conductor – assisting Iain McLarty our Music Director.

Caroline is a final year music student at the University of Edinburgh and combines her studies with as much practical musical experience as she can. She loves composing for choirs and orchestras, and conducting. She plays viola in various Edinburgh ensembles.

From Michigan, USA, Caroline has packed a lot in since her arrival in Edinburgh. She has conducted the Information Services Group Choir at the university, the choir of Greyfriars Kirk (as part of her choral scholarship), and New College Choir. She has assisted with the Dalkeith Singers, and conducted, alongside Dr John Kitchen, MBE,  the Edinburgh University Singers while they were on tour in Poland. Recently she has taken up the position of Music Director with Le Petit Verre Opera Productions as well as a conductor position with the Royal Dick Veterinary School Musicians.

In 2015, Caroline founded the choir Voces Inauditae, an Edinburgh based SATB choir dedicated to the integration of lesser-known composers into the choral repertoire, with an emphasis on gender equality. Voces Inauditae comprises students (music and non-music alike), with some amateurs and professionals from around Edinburgh. Says Caroline “It’s a project I started at the end of my second year, and I’ve been unbelievably lucky to have such support for. It’s been a real blast to do such a huge range of music, from music hot off the press to music hundreds of years old.”

“I graduate this coming summer with a BMus from Edinburgh University.  I’m currently applying to various masters programmes around the country, with an eye towards becoming an academic. While my main love is my research, I intend to keep conducting as a large part of my life.”

And how about the challenge of conducting a mature choir about to celebrate its 50th anniversary?

“What I love most about conducting is that you have to react and change your connection to people. It’s what makes it exciting and challenging. I’ve worked with a lot of “mature” choirs in the past, so I’m used to it. SCC is positively youthful compared with many of the groups I’ve worked with – both in age and in looks!”

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