Elias graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and College in Voice Performance and Ancient Greek, respectively, and sang opera professionally for three years before entering the PhD program in Performance Studies at Northwestern University and beginning their own music composition practice in the same year. Graduating with the degree in 2014, Elias was Consortium for Faculty Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow in Women Studies at Vassar College from 2014-2016, and currently holds the inaugural César Chávez Postdoctoral Fellow in Latin American, Latino, and Caribbean Studies at Dartmouth College. Their book project, Transvocality in Hemispheric Music Performance, centers the singing voice as a sonic lens for the performance practices of transgender musicians in North, Central, and South America. They have received numerous awards and honors for their scholarship, including the Philip Brett Award for "exceptional musicological work in the field of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual/Transgender Studies" from the American Musicological Society in 2015 for their dissertation. They have released three albums of original music and are releasing their fourth, "Ditties, Doozies, and Donts," January 2017, produced by Paul Antonell of the Clubhouse in Rhinebeck, New York.