A native of Texas, Will Hudgins won Interlochen Center for the Arts' Joseph E. Maddy memorial scholarship to attend the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. In 1980, he earned his bachelor's degree and won the highest award in the school's Concours Recital Competition. After completing his work at Peabody, Hudgins went on to Temple University in Philadelphia, where he earned his master's degree and studied with Philadelphia Orchestra percussionist Alan Abel. In the spring of 1982, 10 days before he was awarded his master's, he won a position with the Florida Symphony Orchestra, with which he remained until joining the Boston Symphony Orchestra in November 1990. While a member of the Florida Symphony, Hudgins also conducted the orchestra in numerous educational and outreach concerts. Before joining the Florida Symphony, he performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Santa Fe Opera Orchestra, and Annapolis Symphony under Leon Fleisher. A Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center in 1982 and 1983, he also participated in the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado. Locally, he has performed with the contemporary music ensemble Collage New Music. An avid golfer, Hudgins's outside interests also include downhill skiing.