McDonald takes position Philadelphia Youth Orchestra

Posted on: July 12, 2010

In Sunday’s (7/11) Philadelphia Inquirer, David Patrick Stearns writes a lengthy profile of conductor Geoff McDonald, recently appointed as a conductor at the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, whose career thus far has been “catch-as-catch-can … Example: Driving to a recent conducting audition with the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, he was pulled over because the registration for the car he’d borrowed from his sister had expired. So instead of focusing on the audition piece, Beethoven’s lofty Symphony No. 9, he was muttering choice words about his sister as the minutes ticked away. Arriving at the rehearsal hall barely in time, he hoped he wouldn’t be asked to conduct the symphony’s third movement, the most sublime—and the toughest to sustain. But after a quick huddle with Louis Scaglione, the youth orchestra’s formidable music director, McDonald set his jaw, [and] headed for the podium… Within a few weeks, he had the job. … In his newest gig, McDonald will work chiefly with the Young Artists Orchestra, an ensemble of gifted players ages 8 to 21 that feeds into the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra. The PYO is one of the best of its kind—and one whose culture he knows well, having been a cellist in the group.”

Posted July 12, 2010