Montreal, Québec

Growing up in Salluit (Nunavik, Quebec), Elisapie dreamed of being an artist. There wasn’t a word or vocabulary for it in Inuktitut, but it was a feeling that came into being through music.

Communication and curiosity are at the heart of Elisapie’s life. Her first job at the community radio station, where she worked with journalists, community members and of course music, shaped her journey and view of the world. Though she left Salluit when she attended college in Montreal, her community has stayed with her and pushed her to become the musician and artist that she is today.

“My community is a big town, but with a small-town mentality that’s very tight knit, very proud. We’ll help you. We’ll do things together. Pride is based on taking care of one another and working through our challenges. It’s not individual pride. It’s about being sallumio, which is what we call people who are from Salluit. It’s quite a community to be proud of.”

As a mother, she knows that giving advice is hard, but believes it is important to remind youth to make space and listen to their inner selves; to think about what they mean and want to do. Inuit would spend time gathering their thoughts before acting or making decision and that is something Elisapie believes everyone can benefit from.

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