Elisa is from the Washington, DC area, and received her early training from the Academy of the Maryland Youth Ballet, studying with Tensia Fonseca, Michelle Lees, Eric Hampton and Rhodie Jorgenson, amongst others. She received her BFA from the Juilliard School, under the direction of the late Benjamin Harkarvy. While in school she had the opportunity to work with and perform with the Nederlands Dans Theater.
Following graduation, Ms. Clark danced with the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, as well as the Peridance Ensemble, directed by Igal Perry, in addition to being a founding dancer in Robert Battle’s Battleworks Dance Company. At Battleworks, she also served as the Company Manager, and assistant to Mr. Battle. Ms. Clark assisted Mr. Battle with some of his earliest commissions, including Juba and Love Stories for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Mass for the Juilliard Dance Ensemble, and Feast for Introdans. She has also staged and coached existing work of Mr. Battle’s at the American Dance Festival, Brown University, Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School and Camp, The Fieldston School, Juilliard, the New York State Summer School of the Arts (NYSSSA), Introdans, UMASS, Houston Met, New World School for the Arts, Barnard College, Plymouth State University, Keene State University, George Mason University, Towson University, University of the Arts, Center of Creative Arts (COCA), Steps Scholarship Ensemble, and Ailey II, amongst other schools and companies.
In addition to rehearsal directing for Mr. Battle, she has assisted choreographers Carolyn Adams, Adam Hougland, and Igal Perry at NYSSSA, Juilliard and Ailey II respectively. Ms. Clark has also taught independently across the nation and worldwide, and was an annual Guest Artist for Georgetown University from 2004-2006. She has been on the faculty of the American Dance Festival, both for the summer festival and the winter intensive, as well as traveled to adjudicate ADF scholarship auditions.
As part of her work with the American Dance Legacy Institute, directed by Carolyn Adams, she has staged the Parsons Etude, choreographed by David Parsons, in Montreal at Ballet Divertimento, where she also taught technique classes, and choreographed her own work in both 2004 and 2005. Through her work with the Parsons Etude she has been involved as a teaching artist for the Joyce Theater Education Department, working in schools in NYC and Connecticut, as well as leading workshops offered at the Joyce Soho for NYC school teachers.
In 2006, Ms. Clark joined the Mark Morris Dance Group as a full-time company member. In addition to teaching company class, and at the Mark Morris Dance Center, she has taught Master Classes at the University of Illinois – Champaign/Urbana, the Kennedy Center, George Mason University, University of Washington, University of Arizona, and other schools and community centers on behalf of the company. In 2008 the company nominated her for the Princess Grace Award, in which she won an honorarium for Modern Dance. In 2011 she left her full-time position with the company, only to return to guest perform from time to time. In 2011, she also rejoined the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, performing featured roles with Clifton Brown. Ms. Clark has also danced for the Metropolitan Opera Ballet at Lincoln Center in productions choreographed by Mr. Morris, Ben Wright and the innovative Crystal Pite. In 2013, Ms. Clark joined the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, having the honor of dancing the legendary work Revelations over 100 times per year, while traveling the world six out of every twelve months! She danced featured roles in Matthew Rushing's Odetta, as well as the coveted duet Twin Cities in Mr. Ailey's The River. During her four years with Ailey, not only was she a company teacher, but she also assisted in the creation of Mr. Battle's Awakening and was also responsible for staging Mr. Battle's Mass.
She has been on the faculty and Advisory Board of the New Jersey Dance Theater since 2001. From 2002-2006 she was also on an Advisory Panel for Capezio, where she helped test out new footwear and products. Ms. Clark is a member of AGMA, and is a certified Life Coach. As one of Mr. Battle's only repetiteurs, she spends much of her time staging and coaching his work, as well as working as an independent Master Teacher and Guest Artist.