With a repertoire spanning several centuries, from renaissance polyphony to modern opera, Nathan McDonald, baritone, is often lauded for his vocal versatility. With a diverse musical background including a degree in trumpet (UVic) and seven years as a church Music Director, Nathan brings a wealth of experience and musicianship to his craft. In his teaching, Nathan emphasizes the exploration of resonance through body awareness, and the importance of an emotional connection to both music and text, regardless of style or genre. Nathan’s approach to pedagogy stems from his extensive work as a student of soprano, Nancy Argenta, combined with his experience as an instrumentalist, conductor, chorister, and professional singer. By identifying clear goals and devising strategies to meet them, Nathan’s priority is the artistic fulfilment of his students through self-discovery, performance, and ultimately, fun.
Active as an oratorio singer, Nathan regularly appears as a soloist with ensembles including the Pacific Baroque Orchestra, Victoria Baroque Players, Cowichan Consort, and Vox Humana Chamber Choir. Past season highlights have included Handel’s Joshua, Mozart’s Requiem, and Haydn’s Nelson Mass with the Victoria Choral Society; Monteverdi’s Vespers and Bach’s St. John Passion with the Victoria Philharmonic Choir; numerous cantatas, Duruflé’s Requiem, and Bach’s St. John Passion with the Victoria Baroque Players; Bach’s Magnificat with the Sook Philharmonic; the debut of a recently uncovered cantata by Graupner at the Pacific Baroque Festival; and Thomas Tallis’ 40-voice Spem in alium with the Tallis Scholars under Peter Philips in New York.
Operatically, Nathan made his mainstage debut with Pacific Opera Victoria in 2016 as Fiorello in The Barber of Seville. Other appearances with Pacific Opera include the Herald in Verdi’s Otello, the bass in the School Touring production of Mary’s Wedding, Papageno in the Living Opera School workshops for The Magic Flute, and chorus in Les Feluettes. Nathan’s operatic credits also include The Count in The Marriage of Figaro with the Victoria Conservatory’s Opera Studio; Marcello in La bohème at Edmonton’s NUOVA festival; Dandini in La Cenerentola in Italy with Accademea Europa dell’Opera; Marco in Gianni Schicchi with Opera on the Avalon; Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte with ViVace Vancouver; and Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas with the Victoria Conservatory’s Opera Studio.
Nathan has presented recitals in Canada and the United States, and has sung professionally in choirs on four continents. A veteran of youth-oriented choral projects, Nathan has sung several times with the National Youth Choir of Canada and World Youth Choir, as well as the Carnegie Hall Chamber Choir (New York, NY), JSB Ensemble (Stuttgart, Germany) Bach Academy Weimar (Weimar, Germany), and Academia Internacional Teatro del Lago (Chile).
For more information on current performances, or for multimedia selections, please visit my website.