Full-length Bio for Susan Ellenton 

Susan is a long-time, award-winning songwriter specializing in acapella originals. She writes poetry, memoir and creative

non-fiction for performance, and directs an experimental women’s chorus in Victoria B.C. 


Education - Formal 


University of Waterloo, Bachelor of Arts, non-major, 1977. Academic scholarships. 

Capilano College, Commercial Music Program 1984/5. 

Humber College School of Writing (correspondence program) creative non-fiction, 1999. Scholarship.

Toronto Conservatory of Music, Grade 8 Piano, Grade 2 Theory, 1969. 


Education - Short Courses (Selected) 

Solo Performance, Lena de Guevera, Royal Roads, 2015. Classes with Stephen White, Dave Morris. 

Writing: Amherst Method with Karen Lee Pickett; Non-Fiction with Terry Glavin, 2002; Playwriting with Joan McLeod, 2000.

Voice: National Theatre School workshop; group lessons with Jennifer Scott, Kim Scanlon, Louise Rose. 

Movement: Body Jazz - Christian Swenson; on-going Restorative Yoga - Misha Butot; Contact Improv, etc.

Songwriting: Chris Williamson, Cosi Sheridan, Linda Waterfall, Bob Franke, Lisa Aschmann, David Francey.

Storytelling: The Flame, with Deborah Williams, 2017.



Presentations and Performance (Selected) 

Singer-Songwriter: at Festivals, Coffeehouses, Folk Clubs and House Concerts, 1982 - present. Highlights: 

Mariposa, Canadian Heritage Festival, St. John’s Newfoundland, Juneau Alaska, New Zealand, Dawson City, Yellowknife, London Home County, Seattle Folklife, Winnipeg Wymmyn’s club, Lesser Slave Lake, etc. 

Theatre: Stepping Out, Kaleidoscope Theatre 1985. Composer, Music Director, Actor. Belfry Theatre,Victoria.

Hagimari No Hagimari, Kaleidoscope Theatre 1988. Composer for lyrics by Marilyn Bowering.

Resonance - Voices of Northern Women, Yukon 1984. Songwriter and Performer.

Cowboy Bob, Director. (Script by Robert Anderson). Victoria Fringe Festival, 1989. 

Presentations: Park Naturalist, CRD Parks 1989 - 1995. Creation and performance of public programs.

Multi-media presentation Heart and Hands at Metchosin Summer School of the Arts, 2014.

Painting the Path, scripted concert, Open Space,Victoria BC. 1998. Created, workshopped and presented. 

The Secret of My Happiness, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, 1998. Solo voice - creation and performance. 


Publications (Selected) 

CDs: Gleeclub (Duo), 1985

In the Backyard (Duo), 1994

Secret of My Happiness (Solo), 1998

Painting the Path (Trio), 2000

The Allison Sessions, 2017

Sing for No Reason (Solo with friends), 2017


Poetry: Auditoria, self-published, 2015

Four Ways Forward, in midwinter cache, writings from the whisky jack collective, 2017

Troll Breath and Other Foolishness, self-published, 1999



Winner of Songwriting contests: City of Victoria Official Song (1994). Arctic Winter GamesTheme (1984).

Christine Lavin’s Under the Radar Award, NewYork.  Top ten albums of 1998. 

Winner: Saltwater Slam Poetry Performance 2004. 

Victoria School of Writing Postcard Fiction, 2002.

Grant Recipient: Canada Council Explorations and Clifford Lee Foundation Grants for Voices of Northern Women, 1984. 



Songwriting @ music camps:

Puget Sound, Georgia Strait, Womenfriends, Gabriola Songwriters Retreat, Vancouver Island Music Retreat.

Storytelling @ Songroots music camp, 2017.

Authentic Voices School of Music (Founder, Director).  Songwriting, Vocals, Performance. 1994 - 2000.