At the suggestion of the Chicago musicologist Howard Mayer Brown, she was appointed in 1982 as musician-in-residence at the Newberry Library and given the task of organizing an early music concert program. This led to her co-founding the Newberry Consort in 1986, one of America's best and most versatile Renaissance music groups, which has become ensemble-in-residence at the Newberry and at Northwestern University. She remains director of the Newberry Consort. She has also played with the New York Pro Musica and the Waverly Consort as well as many other U.S. and European ensembles and is a founding member of the ensembles Elizabethan Enterprise and Les Filles de Sainte-Colombe.
Springfels believes in getting close to the audience, literally by performing in smaller venues, but also by teaching and educating them about the music and theories behind performance of early music. Therefore, she is frequently found at workshops and conferences. Academically, she has taught at Duke University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Chicago, and the Northwestern University School of Music.