Chicago native Elisa Montalvo is based in Shanghai, China where she is a choreographer for Shanghai Disney. Since arriving in the Middle Kingdom in 2012, Elisa has served as a resident teacher and choreographer for China's first private modern dance company, Jin Xing Dance Theater and has choreographed for China’s first two seasons of So You Think You Can Dance. Additional television work includes choreographing for Dancing with the Stars, and performing in the live finale of China’s Got Talent, Season 5. Elisa's commercial choreography can be seen in promotions for Sephora, Casio, Honda, Land Rover, Martell and Chivas Royale.
September 2016, Elisa was invited to Manila to judge a ballet competition hosted the Association of Ballet Academies, Philippines (ABAP) and to teach contemporary and jazz workshops. One month later she travelled to Xinjiang to choreograph for 《你美丽了我的人生》, a movie SYTYCD China, Season 2 champion, Gulmira, is starring in. In November, Elisa returned to Nairobi, Kenya as she was invited to choreograph, teach and perform as part of a "Dance for Peace" festival promoting unity though diversity and through art.
In the United States, Elisa’s professional dance credits include performances with Beyoncé for Oprah’s Farewell Spectacular, Jennifer Hudson, Aubrey O’Day from Danity Kane and working as an assistant choreographer for and performing with the Black Eyed Peas for the viral “I Gotta’ Feeling” flash mob. She carries with her a wealth of training, teaching, choreography and professional performance credits in ballet, jazz, tap, lyrical, modern, hip hop and contemporary styles of dance. Elisa holds a B.A. in Mathematics and Economics from the University of Chicago.
SYTYCD China, S2 (中国好舞蹈)
Studio Choreography Reel (2014)
Choreography Reel (2013)
Performance Reel (2013)
Mickey's Storybook Express
Officially Premiered June 16th!
Created the choreography for the spectacular daytime parade that transports fantasy, romance, music and merriment throughout Shanghai Disneyland. This performance travels along the longest Disney park parade route and brings Shanghai's Magic Kingdom to life with joyful energy and story telling! Performed up to twice a day, the performance includes 7 Floats, 1 Grand Puppet and over 100 performers!
SHDR Grand Opening Events
June 14- 16, 2016
Tomorrowland Starlight Celebration
Choreographed a hip hop number to the song "Immortals" from the movie Big Hero 6. The piece included 10 Disney dancers, 2 dancers from SYTYCD China and finished with Baymax and Chinese pop sensation- Momo Wu (吳莫愁).
Grand Opening Gala and Dedication
Worked as an Assistant Choreographer for these historic performances. Assisted staging 600+ choir members and rehearsed the "Spark" and "Snow White" sections of the Gala. For the Dedication, created and taught final "arm-ography" for the 200+ Operations cast members and performers prior to staging them in front of the Enchanted Storybook Castle.
SHDR Pre-Opening Events
Choreographed the flash mob that surprised travelers on June 7th at Pudong Airport. Mickey, Minnie and the rest of the Fab 8 joined over 30 dancers and extras for this joyful moment.
CCTV Children's Day Gala
Choreographed the Fab 5's Children's Day Gala performance that aired on CCTV 1 and was viewed by millions throughout China.
Choreographed the production number that toured throughout China as part of a themed exhibition that showcased the creative highlights of the resort. Cities included: Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Qingdao and Beijing.
Choreographed the production number for the media event on March 28 that announced Yao Ming, Sun Li and Lang Lang as Shanghai Disney's Honorary Ambassadors. This event kicked off the official 80 -Day countdown to Grand Opening!
Talent Audition Tour
October 2014- March 2016
Toured with Disney to over 13 cities as the Choreographer to audition dancers, musicians and actors for the park and to audition kids for the first Mandarin production of The Lion King. Photos and video clips of me teaching dancers at our first audition in 2014 were featured on the front page of local newspapers (also available online) and on the evening news .
We might be coming to your city soon so be sure to check http://disneyauditions.com/audition-calendar/ for a chance to be a part of the magic!
Shanghai Tourism Festival
September 2014 + 2015 + 2016
So you think you can dance
Seasons 1 & 2
Season 1 (舞林争霸) Choreography
Did you know, Elisa is the only choreographer to have created for both seasons!
Dance Spirit Magazine
I had the honor of sharing my journey with So You Think You Can Dance, China, Season 1 with October 2013 edition of Dance Spirit Magazine.
To learn more and to watch a video I created in conjunction with this article, check out DanceSpirit.com!
For Oprah's 24th Season Premiere and in coordination with the Black Eyed Peas, I was an assistant choreographer for the viral flash mob that included over 20,000 participants.
This event was featured in a special publication of the Oprah Magazine, "Behind the Scenes of 25 Incredible Years.
Check out Oprah.com to see the epic performance as well as get a chance to learn the dance that took over Chicago's Magnificent Mile.
Tianjin Daily, Etc.
"I want to see a person dancing, not a machine."
Tianjin Daily Online published an article sharing what I look for in dancers auditioning for So You Think You Can Dance, China and a special dancer who caught my eye in Season 1.
Shanghai, China | June 2014
After a rainy week in Shanghai, while preparing for the finale of SYTYCD China, Season 2, the sun finally came out! San Yang (finalist), Suan Fu Bo (partner) and I decided to take 15 minutes and film part of our piece outside. Although you will see a much more polished routine when the finale airs, we had a joyful time dancing in the sunshine!
You'll Find A Way
Beijing, China | April 2014
In the audition round for SYTYCD China, Season 2, a jazz funk dancer from Beijing asked me to choreograph a jazz solo for him. He knew working with me would be risky in that he would only have two days to rehearse a piece of choreography in an unfamiliar style but decided he wanted a challenge and wanted to learn. After he got cut from the show, the solo was something he wanted to continuing working on and eventually film
Shanghai, China | December 2013
I choreographed and coordinated a "Ride My Bike Around the World" Flash Mob to to welcome journalists Morgan and Chris of Postulate One to Shanghai. These journalists spent 22 months riding their bicycles from Paris to Shanghai traversing 24,000 km through 22 countries.The flash mob featured 20 dancers from 7 countries; United States, China, Ukraine, Spain, Russia, Germany and France. Check out PostulateOne.com to read more about their epic adventures!
Chicago, IL, USA | 2009 - 2015
Dani Deal's Music Videos - Featured Dancer
Dancing in Chicago Based Choreographers' Choreography
Calm Down Chor: Krista Ellenshohn, Video: Jack Chen (2015)
King Sh!t Chor: Susan Skrzymowski, Video: Andrew Phan (2014)
Float Chor: Leila Henry, Video: Xavier Cunningham (2013)
my quantitative side
Stutland Volatility Group (Chicago, IL)
Winter 2011- Spring 2012
I had the pleasure of working with SVG on a project to develop rule-based models/strategies on how to trade gold (moving buy-write, fixed buy-write, non-overlay, leveraged, non-leveraged) using gold options as well as other benchmarks.