Ken MacDonald has been described as a "master french hornist"
by the Toronto Star. His career has taken him to every area of
Canada: from Saltspring Island, to Cape Spear Newfoundland, to
Nunavut. Born in Vancouver, Ken graduated from the University of
BC directly into a position as principal horn of Symphony Nova
Scotia. Subsequent engagements as principal horn with the
Vancouver Opera and the Hamilton Philharmonic also led to
short-term principal contracts with such groups as the Canadian
Opera Company and the Vancouver Symphony.
As a chamber musician, Ken has appeared with many of the
nationís top festivals, including a ten-year association with
the Festival of the Sound in Parry Sound. Recent solo
commissions include Malcom Forsythís Concerto for Eight,
premiered at Rideau Hall by invitation of then Governor-General
Adrienne Clarkson, and Heather Schmidtís Light and Dark, a
double concerto written for Ken and famed violist Rivka Golani.
Ken has an interest in primate proto-culture which led to a
research trip to Borneo in 2004. His study of wild orangutans
and their responses to music, as a cultural commonality between
them and humans, was recognized by leading primatologists, and
was published and cited in several sources.
Ken is associate principal horn with the Winnipeg Symphony and
principal horn of the Hamilton Philharmonic.