Elizabeth Start is a composer, cellist, arts administrator, and union officer, currently dividing her time between Kalamazoo MI and the Chicago area.
In Michigan, she is a cellist with the Kalamazoo Symphony, Executive Director of the Michigan Festival of Sacred Music (a 501(c)(3) arts organization), and Secretary/Treasurer of the Kalamazoo Federation of Musicians, Local 228, AFM. Her work “Traces” was commissioned by the Kalamazoo Symphony for their 100th anniversary season.
In Illinois she is a cellist with with the Elgin Symphony, and a member of the Chicago Composers’ Consortium and Chicago Musicians Club of Women. She is also a member of the International Alliance of Women in music and has provided CD reviews for their journal.
As a performer, she has premiered over 100 works. As a composer, she has received numerous grants and commissions and over 500 performances of over 140 works in the U.S. and abroad. While living in Chicago, she performed with Ralph Shapey’s Contemporary Chamber Players, on chamber concerts of new music at Orchestra Hall with members of the CSO, for American Women Composers, CUBE, and New Music Chicago.
She has taught cello, acoustics, composition, music history and theory, world music, music appreciation and basic mathematics at institutions including Columbia College, Depaul University, Elgin Suzuki, and Kalamazoo College.
Her education includes a B.A in mathematics and B.Mus in cello from Oberlin College and Conservatory, master’s degrees in cello and theory/composition from Northern Illinois University, and a PhD in composition from the University of Chicago.