Gothic cello - Craig Hultgren photo by Karen Graffeo

For several decades, cellist Craig Hultgren has been a fixture on the scenes for new music, the newly creative arts, and the avant-garde. Recently leaving Birmingham after more than 30 years as a member of the Alabama Symphony, he now resides outside of Decorah, Iowa as the farmer-cellist. The New York Classical Review commented that he, "…played with impressive poise and sensitivity…" for Dorothy Hindman's recent chamber music retrospective at Carnegie Hall. At this point, more than 200 works have been created for him. A recipient of two Artist Fellowships from the Alabama State Council on the Arts, he was a member for many years of Thámyris, a contemporary chamber music ensemble in Atlanta. He is a founding member of Luna Nova, a new music ensemble with a large repertoire of performances available as podcast downloads on iTunes. Hultgren is featured in three solo CD recordings including The Electro-Acoustic Cello Book on Living Artist Recordings. For ten years, he produced the Hultgren Solo Cello Works Biennial, an international competition that highlighted the best new compositions for the instrument. He taught at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, the Alabama School of Fine Arts and Birmingham-Southern College where he directed the BSC New Music Ensemble. He is a founding member and former President of the Birmingham Art Music Alliance and was on the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Youth Orchestras of Birmingham and their Scrollworks program. Currently, he is member of the Board of Directors for the Iowa Composers Forum and Vice President of the Oneota Valley Community Orchestra Board of Directors in Decorah. Last summer, he was the featured performer for the Summer Composition Intensive at Saint Mary’s College in South Bend, Indiana.

Email - Luna Nova website/extended techniques articles: Birmingham Art Music Alliance link:

15 Minutes of Fame performance/YouTube: drowningXnumbers by Dorothy Hindman/YouTube: I understand you perfectly by Melissa Grey/YouTube:


Double Bow Improvisation

Live recording of free-style playing on an amplified acoustic cello.