Dr. McDonald, (b. 1958), began his musical instruction at the age of 18, studying classical guitar and composition with George Lindquist and Kenneth Beil. He received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in 1981 where he studied classical guitar with Susan Gulick and composition with the late August Wegner and briefly with synthesizer pioneer Otto Luening. His 4 movement neo-classic Sonata for Guitar was premiered that same year by Ms. Gulick.
In 1988, after studying classical guitar with Raymond Mueller, Mr. McDonald enrolled in the University of Wisconsin- Madison where he earned a Master of Music Degree. His composition teachers at UW included Joel Naumann and
Stephen Dembski. He also studied guitar with Javier Calderon. He completed a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Composition/Theory 1994.
Dr. McDonald is a two time winner of Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Composition contests. His Concertino for Bass Clarinet and Orchestra was premiered by William Helmers -Bass Clarinet (Conducted by Catherine Comet)
with the M.S.O. in 1993 and his Fanfare from Pieces for Orchestra was premiered by the MSO in July 1990 under the baton of Neal Gittleman. Also, his Scenes from Sheridan Road for concert band was premiered in May of 1994
at the University of Wisconsin -Parkside, and was recently recorded by the Waukesha Symphonic Band under Dr. Larry Harper.
Larry was awarded the 1994 Choral Music Prize by the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association for his work I Am Music. His Magnificat was premiered in Italy at the 1997 Spoleto Festival by the Bel Canto Chorus under the direction of Richard Hynson. His latest choral work, Missa brevis, was premiered at the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, also by the Bel Canto chorus.