December 28, 2007
It’s common for female singers to cite Barbra Streisand and Judy Garland as their influences, but it’s quite a rare occurrence to encounter a woman who can take the songs of such legends and make them her own. Linda Eder has done just that.Born in Brainerd, Minnesota, her immigrant parents exposed her to many different types of music, including pop and classical. But three singers influenced her more than any others: Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, and classical/jazz soprano Eileen Farrell.
Linda spent most of her 20’s perfecting her vocals and stage performance. She sang regularly, and by age 26, had her own show at Harrah’s Casino in Atlantic City. It was during her time at Harrah’s that her unique style began to evolve.
In 1987, Linda tried out for the television show Star Search and won a spot on the first episode of that season. Hoping to win one show, Linda proved unbeatable for an unprecedented 12-week run. Her success on Star Search led to a leading role as Lucy Harris in the 1990 Broadway-bound musical Jekyll & Hyde, a role she played approximately 900 performances.
She recorded seven albums between 1994 and 2004, each a blend of standards, pop hits and original songs and each showcasing her extravagant vocal gifts.
Linda’s career is built on a solid Broadway base, but reaches far beyond it. Over the years, passionate fans across the country have packed concert venues, including New York’s Carnegie Hall. Among her many milestones, Linda has been profiled by the Bravo Network, had a solo concert run at Broadway’s Gershwin Theater, and performed the track Gold to which Kristi Yamaguchi skated during the opening ceremonies at the 2002 Winter Olympics.
Aside from music and family, Linda has a lifelong love of animals. She took it a step further with Trail Mix, a primetime television special she created and hosted for Animal Planet. The show teamed other celebrities who share her passion for horses.
Linda’s recently released CD, By Myself, showcases the songs of Judy Garland. In its 11 tracks, Linda pulls off the impossible: paying tribute to her musical idol and capturing the contrasting strength and fragility of Judy’s voice, while making the timeless Garland songs her own. Singing with amazing power and clarity, Linda delivers these glorious songs and proves that she is a vocal force to be recognized as one of the great solo voices, regardless of whose music she sings.
For Linda Eder, the rainbow never ends.
This performance was co-sponsored with the Wheeler Opera House.