Barbara Stephenitch

Barbara, who is from Chicago, is a retired teacher who continues to tutor Spanish at her local community college.  She also does some literacy tutoring.  Barbara began her musical journey playing the flute in high school. She started playing the cello in 2000 when her children were involved with instrumental and vocal music.  Barbara’s first cello was a rental.  Her current cello, cello #3, was purchased from a student who had attended the Curtis Institute of Music, and decided she wanted to raise horses.  So she sold her cello to Barbara so that she could buy a horse!

Barbara attended her first Cellospeak camp in 2007, which was the last year that the venue was in Orkney Springs, Virginia.  She has attended the workshop every year since then with the exception of 2014, the year her granddaughter was born.  For Barbara, it’s been quite the yearly road trip to the Cellospeak workshop in Bryn Mawr.  She leaves Chicago on Tuesday by car with the goal of arriving by Saturday.  She takes the scenic route to get there, U.S. 30 from Crystal Lake, Illinois, all the way to Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.

At home, Barbara takes weekly cello lessons from her current teacher, who she’s been studying with for ten years.  She practices 1 – 1 ½ hours every day, works on solo pieces, and plays every other week with a pianist.  Barbara also plays regularly with a trio of three cellos.  The group enjoys playing works arranged by Jorge Espinoza and Louise Butler, who are part of the Cellospeak workshop faculty.  She purchased the arrangements that the trio uses at the Cellospeak workshop, and looks forward to getting more of these compositions, when they are available to members through the Cellospeak store!