Praised by the Cleveland Plain Dealer for her “superb command of color and nuance,” Elise Blatchford is the Assistant Professor of Flute at the University of Memphis Scheidt School of Music and interim Principal Flute of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra.
A chamber musician, soloist, orchestral musician, and teacher, Ms. Blatchford is a flutist who embraces the independent, the experimental, and the DIY. She was selected by the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) to be a 2017 fellow of their Ensemble Evolution program at the Banff Center for Arts and Creativity. As a founding member of the woodwind quintet The City of Tomorrow, Ms. Blatchford won the gold medal of the Fischoff International Chamber Music Competition in 2011, and received a Chamber Music America Classical Commissioning grant in 2014. The quintet has commissioned new works from composers Hannah Lash, Nat Evans, and John Aylward, among others.
As a recitalist, Ms. Blatchford frequently programs music of the 20th and 21st centuries, and has been an invited guest at venues across the U.S., including Indiana University, University of Oregon, and Yale. In 2018-19, she will tour with a program of works for flute and piano inspired by birds and images of the sky.
Also at home in the traditional orchestra world, Ms. Blatchford will serve as an interim Principal Flute for the Memphis Symphony Orchestra's 2018-19 season. She has performed with the Oregon Symphony, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and the YOA Orchestra of the Americas. With YOA, she toured extensively throughout South America, the Caribbean, and mainland China; made an appearance at Carnegie Hall with Valery Gergiev; and recorded with Philip Glass.
A devoted and energetic pedagogue, Ms. Blatchford works to instill versatile musicianship in her students, so that they can create sustainable and varied careers. She has given master classes at New England Conservatory, Williams College, Longy School of Music, and Skidmore College, among many others. She holds degrees in flute performance from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and the San Francisco Conservatory.
A Powell Artist, Ms. Blatchford performs on a 14K gold handmade Powell flute.