Versatile violinist Elyssa Lefurgey-Smith grew up in Nanaimo, BC playing the violin from the age of 5 studying with Heilwig von Königslöw, an inspiring teacher who led her to her career as a professional violinist. She studied music at the University of Toronto and after a decade of performances in Toronto, Ireland, Italy and France, Elyssa most cherished her time with Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and was inspired to pursue a specialty in early music. In 2016
Elyssa moved back to her island roots to settle in Victoria, BC to be closer to family with young kids Isla and Matty. Excited to pursue new opportunities, she was warmly welcomed by her west coast colleagues and now holds permanent positions in local early music ensembles Victoria Baroque and Pacific Baroque Orchestra (Vancouver). Elyssa has been invited to appear as a guest of the Salt Spring Baroque Music Society, the Quadra Island Festival of Chamber Music and as a guest director with Per Sonatori baroque ensemble in Regina.
In addition to performing, Elyssa is an enthusiastic and passionate educator and has been involved in teaching, coaching and program development for almost 20 years. As an educator in Toronto, Elyssa was both the Director of Strings at the Kingsway Conservatory of Music as well as the assistant strings teacher at Havergal College. Since moving back to the west coast, Elyssa has been invited to work with the Victoria Conservatory as the coordinator of the Junior Summer Strings Academies. She has also been on faculty at the Victoria Baroque Summer Academy since its inception in 2016 and has been invited as a guest coach to the Collegium Ensemble at the University of Victoria. In addition to her role in these programs, Elyssa is the founder of the Victoria Baroque Youth Orchestra and the Cowichan String Academy.