Robert Hanford is concertmaster of the Lyric Opera of Chicago. During the summer, he is a concertmaster and instructor at the Aspen Music Festival. Previously, Mr. Hanford was the Associate Principal Second Violinist of the Minnesota Orchestra, a member of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and a member of Chicago's Grant Park Symphony. He has appeared as soloist on many occasions with the Minnesota Orchestra, the Milwaukee Symphony and other Midwestern orchestras, including the Chicago Philharmonic. He has performed with numerous chamber ensembles, most recently as a member of the Rembrandt Chamber Players. For many summers, he was concertmaster and violin instructor at the Birch Creek Music Festival in Wisconsin and performed and taught at the MidAmerica Chamber Music Festival, the Milwaukee Chamber Music Festival and the Roycroft Chamber Music Festival.
In addition to his professional career as a violinist, Robert has studied and performed on the theremin, one of the first electronic instruments. Robert is also an amateur artist blacksmith, having attended courses of study in Wyoming and Illinois. Other interests include table tennis, juggling, unicycling, and high-voltage electronics.
Mr. Hanford lives in Evanston, Illinois, with his wife Sheila, also a violinist. They have three sons.