Recent reviews describe performances as "mischievous and transparent, a rare phenomenon...... every note is savored with thundering and delicate virtuosity. MacDonald maintains a light yet admirably precise leadership of the ensemble." (Leipziger Volkszeitung) Roderick MacDonald has received critical acclaim for his abilities as both an orchestral conductor and trumpeter.
In February 2012, he appeared again at the helm of the Leipziger Philharmoniker for their annual concert to benefit children's cancer research. In existence since 2000, this monumental event has raised over $1 million dollars for the Leipzig Children's Cancer Clinic. The most recent performance was endorsed and supported by the new US Consulate General in Germany, who was the guest of honor for the "Voyage to America."
Equally comfortable on the podium or in the principal trumpet seat, MacDonald began his career as Principal Trumpet of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, appointed by Music Director Kurt Masur upon completion of his Masters of Music at New England Conservatory. His career as a concert soloist began shortly after this appointment and he has since appeared worldwide as a trumpet soloist with highly regarded ensembles including: Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Japan Philharmonic, Virtuosi Saxonia, Bach Collegium Munich, Leipzig Bach Orchestra, Leipzig Chamber Orchestra, Concerto Leipzig, Kammerphilharmonie Leipzig, and the Super World Orchestra (Tokyo). With a discography of over 25 recordings with the Gewandhaus Orchestra, he can also be heard on recordings with the Leipzig Baroque Soloists, solo recordings, and numerous other chamber and orchestral albums. One of his solo albums was named "CD of the Month" by Naxos.
A conducting pupil of Maestro Kurt Masur, Maestro MacDonald also pursued conducting studies with Bernard Haitink, Gunter Blumhagen, and Volker Rohde. He completed his formal conducting studies at the Leipzig Conservatory, earning a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting. The year of his graduation, he won "Deutsche Dirigenten Forum", a conducting competition in Leipzig. Since his return to the United States, Maestro MacDonald has been a finalist for the prestigious positions such as Assistant Conductor of the New York Philharmonic and Associate Conductor of the Dallas Symphony. He previously served as Music Director of both the Leipzig Philharmonic and Stelzen Music Festival in Germany. Roderick MacDonald currently resides in Dresden, Germany and Fredonia, NY where he is Associate Professor of Trumpet at SUNY Fredonia. He also maintains an active conducting schedule in the US and abroad.