Jill DeGroot is the flutist and founder of Noise Bias: An All-Female Contemporary Ensemble, and Co-Artistic Director and Editor of Cacophony Magazine, Chicago’s magazine for new music and culture. Her work focuses on curating new music performances that directly confront and challenge the gender disparity in the Chicago contemporary music scene. Her goal is to encourage purposeful and thoughtful dialogue while placing decision-making and creative power in the hands of women performers.
Jill is currently a flute performance major at DePaul University School of Music studying with Alyce Johnson. She has performed in master classes with Emmanuel Pahud, Tim Munro, Amy Porter, Jonathan Keeble, Leela Breithaupt, Sonora Slocum, Mark Sparks, and Mary Stolper. Jill has performed in the 2016 Chicago Ear Taxi Festival with DePaul's Ensemble 20+, as well as in the World Premiere of Drew Baker's "NOX.” In 2017 she was the recipient of the Louis Crosby Memorial Endowment Scholarship for the International Contemporary Ensemble's ARC Ensemble program at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.
Kelley Sheehan is a Chicago-based composer and computer musician moving between acoustic, electronic, electro-acoustic, and performance art works. In addition to her work co-curating and co-directing with NoiseBias, Kelley is co-founder of The Plucky Plunkers, a toy piano duo that is focused on commission and performing works for the toy piano.
As an advocate for New Music, she is Co-Artistic Director and Editor at Cacophony Magazine, a Chicago based magazine dedicated to the advocation of contemporary music making and performance.
Mezzo-soprano Ellie McMullin comes from a diverse musical background and utilizes her extended study of cello to inform her singing. Ellie is a recent graduate of the DePaul University School of Music, where she received a BM in vocal performance and studied privately with Julia Bentley, Jane Bunnell, and Jo Rodenburg. As a member of DePaul Opera Theatre from 2012 - 2016, she was seen in productions of La Bohème, Iolanthe, The Magic Flute, and The Fairy Queen. In 2015, she made her debut with Chicago Summer Opera in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Ellie is a co-founder of Micro Opera Ensemble, a group dedicated to performing American operatic and art song repertoire, and sang the role of Ms. Todd in The Old Maid and The Thief for their inaugural performance. In addition to her operatic work, Ellie has appeared around Chicago as a concert soloist. She has been featured with the Rockefeller Chapel Choir at University of Chicago, as well as in PianoForte Foundation’s Schubertiade festival. Ellie has a deep fondness for new music, and has sung with DePaul’s Ensemble 20+, as well as with Disquiet Music Ensemble, premiering the works of upcoming composers in Chicago.
Originally from Southern California, trombonist Elena Grijalva currently resides in Chicago where she is an educator, freelancer and advocate of new music. She earned her Master of Music degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Previously she received her B.M. in Trombone Performance from Lawrence University's Conservatory of Music.
Emily Kerski is a clarinetist and advocate for social imagination and engagement through the arts. She has premiered over a dozen new works for clarinet solo and clarinet ensemble, including recent commissions of a clarinet quartet and mixed reed electro-acoustic quartet by Thomas Lack.
Currently a graduate student at DePaul University, Emily previously studied at the Royal Academy of Music (London) and Colorado State University. While in London, Emily performed as principal clarinetist of the Manson Contemporary Music Ensemble, where she gave the world premiere of Philip Cashian’s Skein and worked with Peter Maxwell Davies and Oliver Knussen.
A founding member of the It Could Be Anything New Music Ensemble, she also pioneered the ongoing CURIOUSER contemporary chamber music recital series, both in Fort Collins, Colorado. Since relocating to Chicago, she has appeared with DePaul’s Ensemble 20+ and is thrilled to be a contributor to the vision of Noise Bias.