Guitarist Susan McDonald

Home | Her Story | Animal Ballets | Projects | Photo Gallery | Remember the River


Animal Ballets are the creation of Susan McDonald in which she combines original music with footage of wildlife she has filmed and edited to create sublime live performances in which she is the "orchestra" and the animals are the "dancers."

The subjects are live animals who seem to dance to her music. In reality, Susan has respectfully composed her music to flow naturally with the movements of the animals. While a bit of creative editing is involved, the animals have given their approval by acting beautifully, humorously and even sometimes outrageously.

THE AQUARIUM: a Marine Micro-Ballet for Guitar and Sea Creatures features the strange and funny occupants of a saltwater reef aquarium, with characters such as the cranky little Pom Pom Crab, the fabulously creative Decorator Crab and the bright red and very active Serpent Star.

For YASUNI: Dances from the Rainforest, Susan traveled deep into the Ecuadorian Amazon to film footage and compose music to interact with the natural sounds of the forest. In this groundbreaking piece, the music interacts with the sights and sounds of the fragile, frightening, mysterious and magical rainforest.

The goal of Animal Ballets is to raise awareness of and appreciation for life forms which are not our own. It is only through that appreciation that we will be inspired to protect these amazing creatures, their fragile environments and the wisdom they offer.

Susan is currently at work on a new Animal Ballet, THE PEACOCK's TALE, which will feature her pet peacock, Quetzalcoatl (aka "Binky") as he enlists other birds to help him find his missing tail.

YASUNI: Dances from the Rainforest