Guitar | Oud | Percussion
Composer | Educator | Conductor
Daniel is a Multi-Instrumentalist (guitar, oud, percussion, sitar), Composer, and Educator based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Due to his creativity, professionalism, and ability to collaborate, he is becoming more and more in demand.
He is the Founder and Director of Halifax, Nova Scotia’s New World Music Ensemble, in which he performs guitar and oud, and is also the Founder and Director of Nova Scotia’s Premiere Middle Eastern Chamber Ensemble Nafas. He also composes and performs flamenco guitar regularly for Halifax based flamenco music and dance companies Maria Osende Flamenco Co. and Compañia Azul
Some achievements include composition, and arranging for Symphony Nova Scotia, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, the Victoria Symphony, and PEI Symphony. All concerts have had tremendous success with rave reviews, and he has also performed guitar in concert with Symphony Nova Scotia, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, the Calgary Philharmonic, and the Victoria Symphony. As both a composer and instrumentalist, MacNeil has been featured and filmed with his chamber ensemble New World Music for an entire concert of original works produced by CBC’s studio 60 and the East Coast Music Hour. Additional concerts he has written for include Orchestral pops in the Celtic music genre for Acadian Celtic group Vishtèn, and an entire Atlantic Airwaves concert produced and recorded by CBC for singer-songwriter Ben Caplan and ensemble.
As an instructor, Daniel has been awarded the Teachers Gold Medal Award from the Royal Conservatory of Canada five consecutive years for teaching Eastern Canada gold medal winners in the classical guitar examination competition. He is a part-time faculty member at The Fountain School of Performing Arts – Dalhousie University, and has taught at Acadia University. Daniel is also a faculty member at the NSCC Ivany Campus where he teaches the World Music Ensemble, and gives private instruction at the Long & McQuade Music Education Centre.
A performer and collaborator in a diverse range of “world music” genres (including: Flamenco, Middle Eastern, Indian Classical, Balkan, Brazilian, and African to name just a few), his musical sensibilities, and proficiency as an instrumentalist are equally adept in New Music, Classical Music, Improv, Jazz, and Fusion styles. Daniel is equally at home as a composer as he is in performance. Drawing on an extremely rich and diverse background, he continually presents new ideas, and produces original works for virtually any medium or genre.
Daniel received his degree in music, with a focus in composition, from Acadia University where he studied with Derek Charke. Between 2007-2010 he studied flamenco formally with world class artists in Madrid, Spain, at the renowned flamenco school of dance and music Amor De Dios, as well as privately. Additionally, specialized training includes Middle Eastern classical music (oud & percussion), in which he has studied extensively with renowned musicians, as well as Indian classical music (pakhawaj in the style of Odissi), which he has studied intensively in India with Padma Charan Dehury.
As a working professional he performs, and composes regularly for soloists, duos, trios, quartets, chamber ensembles, orchestra, percussion, dance, voice, and has premiered a new music work for piano quintet. Additional background includes: Classical, Improv, many styles in “World Music”, Jazz, Folk, and Blues.
Some musicians, and artists Daniel has collaborated with in performance, and in nearly all cases composition, or arranging as well include: Iranian bagpipe master Mohsen Sharifian, Maria Mezcle, Miguel Tellez, Indian classical dancer Josephine Nithya, Maria Serrano, David Romero, Dinuk Wijeratne, Norman Adams, Jennifer king and the Blue Engine String Quartet, Chris Mitchell, Soprano Nicole Jordan, Maria Osende, and Compañia Azul.
In addition to performance, composition, and arranging, Daniel also teaches a wide variety of genres.