Department Chair, Professor and Director of Instrumental Activities

Music Building, 212


Mark Mandarano enjoys an international career as a conductor. He has conducted performances at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and other important venues in the U. S. and abroad.  In both 2017 and in 2018, he was invited to act as a cultural ambassador to Russia leading tours of the American music throughout Russia performing Gershwin (2017) and Bernstein (2018), with sold-out performances in Kaliningrad, Voronezh, Nizhny-Novgorod, Volgograd, Novosibirsk and the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory with the State Symphony Orchestra of Russia “Svetlanov.” He conducted two new works with the New York City Opera in 2009 and has served as principal guest conductor of the Moscow Chamber Orchestra. Mandarano has led performances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Houston Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, Nürnberger Symphoniker, and the Ural Philharmonic. He has worked with conductors such as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Christoph von Dohnányi, Antonio Pappano, Mstislav Rostropovich, Sir Roger Norrington, Valery Gergiev, Leon Botstein, Osmo Vänskä and Leonard Slatkin. Staff positions include those with the Pacific Symphony Orchestra, the American Symphony Orchestra and the Bard Festival. An advocate of the music of living composers, he has conducted world premieres and performances of works by Karel Husa, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Steven Stucky, John Corigliano, Ellen Zwilich, Melinda Wagner, Libby Larsen, David Bruce, Nico Muhly, and others. His association with Slatkin led to Maestro Mandarano conducting the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center. In 2005, he was a prize-winner in the conducting competition of Nuremberg, Germany. Mandarano is the artistic director and conductor of the Sinfonietta of Riverdale, which he founded in 2008. Mandarano is an Associate Professor at Macalester College and serves as the Director of Instrumental Activities. He lives in Saint Paul with his wife, cellist Wilhelmina Smith, two children Augie and Giovanna and their pet, Albus Dumbledog.

MM, Peabody Conservatory
BA, Cornell University