The American mezzo-soprano, Barbara Hollinshead, began her vocal studies at her opera-singing mother's knee, and as an adult has studied with coaches in New York, Washington, and with Max van Egmond in the Netherlands.
Barbara Hollinshead has had career high points singing J.S. Bach at the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, Monteverdi at San Marco in Venice and J.S. Bach's St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244) one-to-a-part with Tafelmusik in Toronto. She has appeared with many of the East Coast's finest early music groups, including Chatham Baroque, Opera Lafayette, the Four Nations Ensemble, and New York Collegium, and has sung under the baton of eminent conductors such as Christopher Hogwood and Andrew Parrott. Many of Washington's leading groups, including the Folger Consort, Washington Chamber Symphony, and Washington Bach Consort, regularly bring Barbara's warmth, expressiveness and joyful presence to their programs. On the stage she has enjoyed being cast in guises as varied as the triumphant god Juno and Hildegard's sin-seeking soul. She also performs extensively in Manhattan and its environs as a member of the NY-based chamber group ARTEK which received audience ovations and critical acclaim at its performance in the Regensburg (Germany) Festival for Early Music. Recent performances have taken her from New York and Boston to Venice and Vicenza in Italy. Her repertoire covers works ranging from medieval Byzantine chant to 20th-century song cycles.
Barbara Hollinshead's discography includes recordings of solo lute songs with lutenist Howard Bass, Renaissance Spanish and Sephardic music with La Rondinella, and works by Mrs. H.H. Beach.
Barbara Hollinshead rounds out her musical contributions with educational endeavors as professor of voice at American University, a leader of master classes on Renaissance and Baroque styles and a cast member of "Bach to School." When not performing, you can find her judging dive competitions and proudly listening to her sons sing at evensong services.