Emily Floyd

Emily Floyd is Pastor for Worship and Music at First Baptist Church of Asheville where she conducts choirs of all ages.  She is the Artistic Director for the Asheville Youth Choirs. Emily serves as the co-director and instructor for the Choristers Guild Institute.  Emily has been a church musician for more than 20 years, and has taught in public schools at the high school and middle school level.  She is passionate about young singers having the opportunity to create beauty and sing with artistry.  She frequently conducts choirs for conferences, state and district honor choirs, and summer camps.   She has presented workshops for ACDA, Choristers Guild, school systems, and sacred music conferences (PAM, Lutheridge, Choristers Guild)a. Emily attended the Florida State University and received a bachelor’s degree in music education (voice) and holds certifications with the Choristers Guild and the Presbyterian Association of Musicians.  Choirs under her direction have performed in 18 states and internationally in places such as St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, St. Mark’s Cathedral in Venice, and St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh.  Emily is passionate about awakening artistry in all singers and nurturing leadership in young singers.

Maria Ellis

Known Internationally as “Girl Conductor”, Maria A. Ellis is a passionate music educator and conductor. She is the owner of Girl Conductor LLC, which specializes in diverse music education resources and serves as the Artistic Director of The Sheldon’s All-Star Chorus and the University of Missouri-St. Louis Voices of Jubilation Ensemble. Maria is a highly sought after clinician, adjudicator and presenter throughout the United States and abroad. She holds a B.M. in Music Education emphasis on Voice (K-12 Certified) Degree from the University of Missouri- St. Louis, Level 3 Certification from the CME Institute for Choral Teacher Education and is currently pursuing her Masters of Arts Degree with emphasis on Choral Conducting from Webster University. Maria is the host of the Award-Winning Radio Show “Bach and Beyoncé” and “American Gospel with Maria A. Ellis” on Classic 107.3, The Voice for the Arts in St. Louis. This past June Maria made her Carnegie Hall Debut as a conductor and was awarded The St. Louis Arts and Education 2023 Arts Innovator Award as well as the St. Louis Suburban Music Educators Association 2023 Merit Award Winner. Maria is an active member of the American Choral Directors Association, National Association for Music Educators where she is the Chair Elect for Choral Music Education Council, Missouri Alliance for Arts Education, where she is chair of the RIDE (Race, Inclusion, Diversity & Equity) Committee and a member of the Chorus America Board. Maria is the wife of Marion Ellis and the mother of Aria, Kendal and Noah Ellis.