Emmy winning cellist and Broadway veteran, Barbara Hedlund has performed throughout
America, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Italy, South Africa, and Antigua. Her name is listed in
Who's Who in American Women, Who's Who in the Midwest, Who's Who in American Universities, Who's Who in America, and the International Who's Who in Music and Musicians Directory. She has performed in more than 150 symphonies, ballet and opera orchestras, choral ensembles, as soloist, chamber musician, recording artist, recitalist, and for sixteen Broadway shows. She has also been active as a university professor, music librarian, editor/publisher, and fine arts administrator.
Before moving to Central Illinois, from 1974-84 she performed as a Broadway musician, a regular
substitute with the New York Philharmonic and as Principal Cellist of the New Jersey Symphony,
Westfield Symphony and Quartet, and Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic. Her film credits
include as associate producer and featured on-camera cellist for the 2003 WILL-TV Emmy Winning Performance Documentary The Song & the Slogan,(The film also features four time Grammy winner/Metropolitan Opera Tenor
Jerry Hadley and actor
David Hartman), as associate producer for the WILL- TV 2004 Documentary The Music of World War II, sound tracks for the Paramount Studios film Star Trek IV, specials for New York Public Television with Mercer Ellington, Sarah Vaughan, & actor Robert Alda, and for A & E Television's Live by Request with Johnny Mathis.
She has recorded albums and sound tracks for RCA, Sony EMI Limited, Sesame Street, Book of the Month Club, Arabesque Records, Sculpture Scope Videos, Amasong, and Reign Records. Tours in America, South Africa, and Antigua were with Shirley Bassey, Michael Crawford, The Music of Andrew Lloyd Weber, The Phantom of the Opera, and The Spinners. Popular artists for whom she played and performed with at Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, Lincoln Center, Westbury Music Fair, and other venues include Kenny Rogers, Diana Ross, Carly Simon, Anne Murray, Ben Vereen, Cleo Lane, Charles Aznavour, Frankie Valli, Rodney Dangerfield, Michel LeGrand, George Shearing, Barbara Cooke, Marian Mc Partland, the Moody Blues, and Flash Cadillac.
Mrs. Hedlund currently performs as Principal Cello of the Champaign Urbana Symphony, Danville Symphony, and Opera Illinois Orchestra, as an extra player for the Peoria Symphony and Eastern Symphony, in addition to regular appearances with 1st Choice Music Services. Her recent recital appearances include a chamber music recital with the New Jersey-based Sutton Ensemble in July 2004; a chamber music recital at the Tarble Arts Center in Charleston, IL in October 2004; for WILL-FM's Second Sunday Broadcast Recital Series in January 2005. She celebrated 10 seasons with the Danville Symphony as soloist in Don Quixote by Richard Strauss in March 2005.
Barbara Hedlund taught for Illinois Wesleyan and Wilkes Universities, the Conservatory of Central Illinois, and as visiting professor at the University of Illinois, Illinois State University, Parkland College, Unit 4 & District 116 schools. She currently teaches for Cellobration Studios and the Illinois Council of Orchestras String Symposium in Monticello, IL.
As a fine arts administrator, she is the personnel manager for the Opera Illinois Orchestra and 1st Choice Music Services, also publisher and arranger for Cellobration Publications and The Virtuoso Obbligato Aria Collection. A founder of musical ensembles in Central Illinois, the list includes the String Society Artists, Baroque Artists of Champaign-Urbana, the Illinois Wesleyan Camerata String Orchestra, and IWU Cello Ensemble, and as inaugural performer for the Sinfonia Da Camera, Illinois Chamber Orchestra, and the Prairie Ensemble.
She was Principal Cello of the Illinois Symphony and Chamber Orchestra for nine seasons.
Subsequently she was the Principal Cellist and chamber music coordinator for the Klassiches Musik Festival in Vienna and Eisenstadt, Austria for five seasons. A 1989 founding performer and advisor for the WILL-FM Radio Second Sunday Concert Series, she remains a regular series performer and advisor. Her 2003 WILL-FM appearance won a shared Crystal Award of Excellence from the International Communicator Awards Committee. (Go to the
WILL Web Site to hear the winning 2003 broadcast with pianist Susan Teicher plus another program she performed (Beethoven with a Twist). Additional awards she has garnered include four Emmy nominations and one award for the 2003 WILL -TV Performance Documentary The Song and The Slogan, named Cellist of the Week by the Web Site "Cello Heaven", an Illinois Council of Orchestras award for Chamber Ensemble of the Year as BACH administrator and cellist, nominated for the Illinois Governor's Arts Award as Individual Artist & for Special Recognition, and a special recognition from the Chicago NW Symphony for establishing a Young Artist scholarship. To further encourage young talent, she was a sponsor for the inaugural Arcadia Chamber Players 2004 Student Chamber Music Competition.
A native of Central Florida, she was an honors student at Rollins College, Florida State University, and a Magna Cum Laude graduate of the Philadelphia Musical Academy. She trained in the finest orchestral traditions with Principal and Associate Principal Cellists of the Boston Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, and London Symphony (Samuel Mayes and Nathan Stutch, plus coachings with Nelson Cooke, Douglas Cummings, and Laszlo Varga). Her chamber music coaches included Henryk Szering, Richard Burgin, Karen Tuttle, Szymon Goldberg, Joseph Silverstein, Leonid Hambro, Jani Szanto, Charles Wendt, the Stradivarius String Quartet; and as a master class performer for Gregor Piatigorsky, Theo Salzman, and Samuel Mayes.
Married in 1974 to noted Bass - baritone Ronald Hedlund, their son Alexander is a senior at the
University of Illinois majoring in Media Studies and Communications. Her step son, aeronautical
engineer Dr. Eric Hedlund, is the Chief of Testing and Evaluation for the US Naval Ballistic Missile Defense Program.