LAKELAND - Robert MacLaurin MacDonald, 83, of Lakeland, FL, passed away peacefully of respiratory failure on Saturday, September 7, 2013.
Mr. MacDonald was for 47 years a professor, a department chair and an artist-in-residence at Florida Southern College, where he also directed the college's Festival of Fine Arts series.
A concert pianist of international renown, Mr. MacDonald had a career that included many solo recitals as well as appearances with leading symphony orchestras in European and American cities.
Following service with the US Air Force, he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Music) Degree in 1950 from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC. There he received the Percy Weeks Award as "Most Promising Pianist" before beginning studies for his Master of Music (in Piano) Degree at Indiana University.
During his Air Force service, Mr. MacDonald was a Band Squadron Commander involved in concerts, music projects and personnel services. Afterwards, he continued his studies for three years in Vienna, Austria, where he received an Artist's Diploma at the Hoch-schule für Musik. He made his Vienna concert debut in 1957 in that city's Musikverein.
There followed a New York City debut at Carnegie Recital Hall before beginning concert tours throughout Europe for the US State Department.
Mr. MacDonald is survived by his wife of 53 years, Ingrid, with whom he toured in duo concerts combining music and theatre; by their daughter, Sona MacDonald, a singer-actress in Vienna; a grandson, Skye MacDonald, also of Vienna; one brother, Donald F. MacDonald of Edinburgh, Scotland; several nieces and nephews as well as grand nieces and grand nephews.
The funeral service will be private. A memorial service will be held at a later date.
The family wishes to express their deep appreciation for Julie Fancelli's generosity and to Alberta Joseph and Pam Lamar for their loving care.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be given to the Robert MacDonald Music Scholarship at Florida Southern College.