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Widely recognized for his broad skill set and musicianship, conductor-composer Timothy McDonnell has earned a reputation for creativity and leadership on and off the podium.  Mr. McDonnell has led several distinguished ensembles, including the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, the Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra, and the Collier County Sinfonietta, in works from across the repertoire.


Equally at home in the orchestral and choral idioms, McDonnell’s performances have gained critical acclaim and national distinction.  Mr. McDonnell is an enthusiastic musical collaborator, and his choral-orchestral partnerships include not only standard works such as the Symphony No. 9 of Beethoven and Carmina Burana, but also extend to less frequently performed masterpieces such as Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Franck’s Psyché.  He has worked with some of the most renowned conductors in the world, including Andrey Boreyko, Carlos Miguel Prieto, Cristian Macelaru, and Robert Page.  McDonnell has served as the Music Director of the Schola Nova Ensemble, Studio Lirico Opera Program, Elysium Concert Opera, the Symphonic Chorale of Southwest Florida, the Ars Laudis Festival Chorus & Orchestra, the choirs of Ave Maria University, and the North American College in Vatican City. 


Mr. McDonnell’s performances with University ensembles have won national recognition.  In 2013 McDonnell was a finalist for the American Prize in choral conducting for his performance of Mozart’s Requiem, and in 2014 he took third place in the 2014 American Prize for his performance of Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem.


McDonnell’s compositions and arrangements have been performed by leading and regional ensembles, including the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, the Yale Repertory Orchestra, and the Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra.  Mr. McDonnell was a finalist for the 2014 American Prize in composition. A successful crossover and recording artist, McDonnell has arranged and conducted tracks released on Rob Hyman’s Monocle label.


McDonnell has prepared numerous performance editions.  Through his work as conductor of the Schola Nova Ensemble, he has cultivated a sub-specialty in music for chamber ensemble drawn from every era. His arrangements of works by Gustav Mahler, Lehár, Bruckner, and Sibelius have increased the chamber orchestra repertory, and have been praised for their innovative use of limited instrumental forces.

“McDonnell's conducting was admirably guided by the longer musical arcs …”
- David Patrick Stearns, The Philadelphia Inquirer
“Timothy McDonnell is a first rate composer, and ... we will be hearing more of his work in the future.”
- The American Prize
"It's hard to say enough about the levels of professionalism in all the choruses who made this performance possible."
- The Naples Daily News
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