Linda Russell

category: Actor, Folk/Traditional, Music,

Contact & Info


Phone: (212) 666-2656


Artist Statement

I bring history to life through music.  Through the songs and stories of the past, I take my audiences on a journey through the joys and sorrows of our forefathers, so that we might better understand what it means to be an American.  For 16 years, I was Early American Balladeer at Federal Hall National Memorial – the site of Washington’s inauguration on Wall Street – where I sang for schoolchildren, tourists and Wall Street business people on their lunch hours!  Now I bring history to life in classrooms, hospitals, community centers and historic sites.  I enthrall audiences with a variety of period instruments such as hammered and mountain dulcimers, penny whistle, guitar and limberjack.  I’ve recorded eight albums of traditional American music including The Good Old Colony Days, Stephen Foster Songs on Albany Records and Sing We All Merrily: A Colonial Christmas on Rounder Records.  I’ve performed in the Carnegie Hall Folk Festival and the Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors festival as well as historic sites, folk clubs, and community events throughout the country.  My programs come in great varieties: History of Women in Song, a History of the Hudson in Song, New York in the Civil War, and many others that can be found on my website:

Educational Background

I graduated with a theater degree from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and then came to NYC where I received an Associate's degree in Acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.  Further acting studies included study with Rae Allen, Carlyn Glynn, Peter Minor and Gene Frankel.  I won the Lawrence Langner Award for best voice and speech at the AADA.  I’m featured in the National Geographic magazine issue on National Parks in July 1979 and 1993, was a subject in Singing at the Top of our Lungs: Women, Love and Creativity, a Harper Collins book.

Teaching Artist Experience

I’ve been a teaching artist with ArtsWestchester for 16 years and have completed residencies on the Colonial/Revolutionary War Era at Yonkers School 5 and 5-day residencies on 18th century music at Midland School in Rye for the last 13 years. Since 1988, I have done arts-in-education with Symphony Space in their Global Arts: Cultural Literacy and Heritage program, performing in hundreds of schools throughout the five boroughs of NYC.  Other arts residencies have been through the Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities and the Brooklyn Arts Council.  I present 18th century music at schools throughout Westchester at Colonial Day events under the auspices of Adventure Game: Historical Education through the Arts.  I also work with special needs children in hospitals and homeless shelters through Music that Heals.   I have done extensive work with seniors and adults with mental illness, introducing them to traditional instruments and igniting their memories with popular songs from their youth.