American pianist Robert McDonald has performed throughout the United States, Europe, Latin America, and the Far East both as solo recitalist and as recital partner to Isaac Stern, Midori, and many others. He has appeared with the San Francisco, Baltimore, Milwaukee, Omaha, and Curtis symphony orchestras, with the Orquesta Sinfonica, Nacional in Costa Rica, and with the Orchestra Sinfonica Haydn de Bolzano e Trento in Italy. As a chamber musician, he has also performed with the Juilliard, American, Takacs, Muir, Brentano, Fine Arts, Vermeer, and Borromeo string quartets, as well as with Musicians from Marlboro. In addition, he has given concerts for the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society, the Chicago Chamber Musicians, NHK and BBC television Worldwide.
McDonald is a member of the piano faculties at both the Juilliard School and the Curtis Institute of Music. For the past twenty-six summers, he has directed the keyboard program at the Taos School of Music and Chamber Music Festival in New Mexico. Other summer teaching and festival activities include the Bergen, Besancon, Lucerne, Montreux, Salzburg, Aldeburgh, and Schleswig-Holstein festivals in Europe, as well as the Marlboro, Brevard and Caramoor festivals in the United States, and the International School of Musical and Arts in Canada. He also gives piano and chamber music master classes at prominent universities and music schools in the United States, Canada, Japan, Korea, and China.
His discography includes recordings for Sony Classical, Vox, Bridge, Musical Heritage Society, and CRI. McDonald’s most recent releases are a recording with violinist Helen Callus for ASV, and an album of French sonata repertoire with Midori for Sony Classical that received the Deutscher Schallplatten Critic’s prize.
Among many awards, prizes and grants, McDonald has won the Gold Metal at the Busoni international competition in Italy, and the top prize at both the William Kapell and the Washington international competitions. He is also the recipient of the National Federation of Music Clubs Artist Award and a grant from the National Endowment for the arts.