Alex Donaldson


What do you teach at WollCon?


What genres do you teach?

My performance degree at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music had a classical focus, but the clarinet lends itself to many different styles which I enjoy exploring with my students. 

What is it that you love about teaching music – particularly at Wollongong Conservatorium?

I love sharing in a student’s sense of achievement and delight when something tricky falls into place. It’s also a privilege to play a part in shaping what may hopefully become a lifelong love of music and music-making. 

Please share a particular career highlight and why it’s special to you.

Playing Saint-Saens’ Organ Symphony with the Sydney Opera House organ was pretty special, but every time I have the chance to play some of the great symphonic and chamber music moments for clarinet feels like such an indulgence – especially anything by Rachmaninov and Brahms.  Orchestral works by Shostakovich, Prokofiev, Mahler, Nielsen, Elgar.
I love performing works by composers I’ve had the opportunity to meet and it’s an absolute treat to play music written by friends!

What’s one piece of music that you’d recommend people listen to?

Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite. This is such an exciting piece to play with its electrifying rhythms and evocative solos for wind and brass.