© Ruth Crafer
Since serving for two years as its Assistant Conductor, he has returned regularly to the Hallé Orchestra, with whom he has conducted over fifty concerts. Other recent guest conducting engagements have included debuts with the Bergen Philharmonic, Netherlands Radio Kammerphilharmonie, RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Lahti Symphony, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony and BBC National Orchestra of Wales, all of which resulted in re-invitations.
Macdonald has also built up an extensive operatic repertoire and is in demand in some of the world’s leading opera houses. Following his highly successful North American debut, conducting Carmen for the Canadian Opera Company in January 2010, Macdonald made his US debut at Lyric Opera of Chicago, conducting a new production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Other appearances in the United States include new productions of The Rape of Lucretia at Houston Grand Opera and Die Zauberflöte at San Francisco Opera. He has also conducted Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Hänsel und Gretel at the Royal Opera House in London, as well as Fidelio, Das Rheingold, Owen Wingrave, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Philip Glass’s Orphée. He has conducted The Barber of Seville, The Pearl Fishers and The Elixir of Love at English National Opera, Idomeneo, Così fan tutte and Albert Herring for Glyndebourne on Tour, L’elisir d’amore for Welsh National Opera and The Abduction from the Seraglio for Opera North.
Rory Macdonald studied music at Cambridge University, and plays the violin and piano. While at university he studied under David Zinman and Jorma Panula at the American Academy of Conducting in Aspen. After graduation from Cambridge he was appointed assistant conductor to Iván Fischer at the Budapest Festival Orchestra (2001–2003), and to Sir Mark Elder and the Hallé Orchestra (2006–2008). He was also a member of the Young Artists’ Programme at the Royal Opera House (2004–2006), where he worked closely with Antonio Pappano on major projects such as the complete Ring cycle, and conducted performances of several operas.