Paul MacAlindin


Paul MacAlindin


Paul MacAlindin

Paul MacAlindin discovered from an early age that he loved being an artist leading artists. As a musician, dancer and all-round performer, he found his voice through conducting, a passionate journey that has led him to work with orchestras and ensembles all over the world, from the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra to the Armenian Philharmonic to the Düsseldorf Symphoniker.

Der schottisch stämmige, international anerkannte Dirigent Paul MacAlindin zeigt am Beispiel des von ihm geleiteten National Youth Orchestra of Iraq Paradoxen auf.

Paradoxes of the National Youth Orchestra of Iraq


One day, whilst eating fish and chips in an Edinburgh pub, famous conductor Paul MacAlindin came across a call for help from Zuhal Sultan in a newspaper lying on the table. This 17 year old pianist in Baghdad wanted to start a National Youth Orchestra of Iraq and needed a conductor.

In the coming months of 2009, they worked tirelessly online with British Council Iraq and Musicians for Harmony between Cologne, New York and Baghdad, to produce their first summer course in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, with young musicians from across the whole country.

Since then, the orchestra has survived logistical, funding, cultural and visa cliffhangers alongside enormous musical challenges to transform itself into a high profile cultural diplomat, performing in Beethovenfest in 2011, Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2012 and this August in Provence, Cultural Capital of Europe.  In order to realise their mission, Paul not only rehearses and conducts the orchestra, but helps them to foster the skills to create their own ensembles and teach in Iraq. Behind the scenes, he has innovated around the countless obstacles required for building a national youth orchestra in a war-torn country.