Leslie Bird (Composer and Musical Director, Women of the Cross) was a voice student at The Hartt School of Music and at The Artists Collective. In 1988, Women of the Cross was founded at The Artists Collective and began performing throughout the greater Hartford community. As musical director, Leslie composes the group's original songs. In 2001, Leslie became a Teaching Artist for the CT Commission on Culture and Tourism and has since completed several residencies in Connecticut schools. She has also been a teaching artist on Judy Dworin's collaborative teaching team at York Correctional Institution, at Synergy Alternative High School, and at the H.O.T Schools Institute. The Judy Dworin Performance Project was recently awarded a Meet the Composer Grant from the New England Foundation for the Arts for Leslie’s composing in "Dreamings."