2017 Chamber 8, 2017, 2015, 2015 India, 2013, 2011
“How many more sleeps?!”

Paul Dean


Head of Winds – Queensland Conservatorium; Composer in Residence – Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, 2019; Artistic Director – Four Winds Festival and Tutti Beijing International Youth Music Festival

Australian Hometown: Brisbane
Education: Queensland Conservatorium

Brisbane born and bred clarinetist Paul Dean is regarded as one of Australia’s foremost musicians in his multiple capacities as soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, composer and artistic director.

Paul is Associate Professor and Head of Winds at Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University, he was the Artistic Director of the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) from 2010-2015 and is a regular member of the Australian World Orchestra. He is Co-Artistic Director of the outstanding Australian chamber group, Ensemble Q with cellist Trish Dean.

Paul was the Artistic Director of the Four Winds Festival and the Tutti Beijing International Youth Music Festival and was also the founder of the Southern Cross Soloists, the Bangalow Music Festival, the Coramba Chamber Music Festival and the Sunwater and Stanwell Winter Music School. From 1987-2000 he was Principal Clarinet with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra.

Paul has performed as soloist with the Queensland, Melbourne, West Australian, Adelaide and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras, the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, Southern Sinfonia NZ, Trondheim Symfoniker (Norway). He has been guest artist with the Navarra Quartet, the Doric Quartet, the Heath Quartet, the Australian String Quartet, the Goldner String Quartet, the Grainger Quartet, the Flinders Quartet, and the Tin Alley Quartet. He has performed as soloist at many Festivals throughout world including the Oxford May Music Festival, the Huntington Music Festival, Alpine Classic Switzerland, the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, Trondheim Chamber Music Festival, Coramba Chamber Music Festival, Camden Haven Music Festival, and the Melbourne, Christchurch, Brisbane, Queensland, Perth, and Sydney Festivals.

Paul’s recording of the Mozart and Brahms clarinet works for the Melba label, and the clarinet music of English composer Benjamin Frankel for German label CPO have won high praise from critics around the world.

Paul has composed music for the violinists Jack Liebeck and Anthony Marwood, cellists Torleif Thedeen, Trish O’Brien and Patrick Murphy, tenor Andrew Goodwin and pianist Daniel De Borah, harpist Marshall McGuire, horn player Andrew Bain, the Brodsky and Flinders Quartets, Katie Noonan, the Melbourne Symphony orchestra, the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, the Aspen Music Festival, Ensemble Q, the Melbourne Piano Trio, the Seraphim Trio, the Endeavour Trio, the lev Vlassenko Piano Competition, and the Australian Flute Festival. Paul’s opera commissioned by the Queensland Conservatorium Opera School, premiered in September 2018, with the Orchestral Fragments being performed by the Queensland Symphony Orchestra in August 2017.

“Dry River Run adds to a significant canon of operas drawing on Australia’s history – from Richard Mills’ Batavia and Richard Meale’s Voss to more recent works such as Kate Miller-Heidke’s The Rabbits and Deborah Cheetham’s Pecan Summer – holding a mirror up to Australia both at Federation and today.” Limelight

“Paul Dean’s new Australian opera Dry River Run is a powerful and epic piece of theatre. Dry River Run is a masterful addition to the burgeoning canon of new Australian operas. It deserves a long life.” Stage Whispers

Paul was appointed Composer in Residence for the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s 2019 season. His clarinet concerto was premiered by the MSO with the composer as soloist and Michael Collins conducting. His violin concerto, A Brief History was dedicated to Stephen Hawking and was premiered in the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s “Symphonic Universe” performances with presenter Brian Cox and violinist Jack Liebeck.

“A Brief History by Paul Dean (the 2019 MSO composer in residence) had its world premiere as part of the show. Dedicated to Professor Stephen Hawking and led by violinist Jack Liebeck, the piece expressed soaring themes of joy (albeit sometimes bittersweet), wit, tension and even rage as it evoked the idea of illness ravaging the body of one of the world’s greatest minds. One notable achievement of the evening was the discovery that a piece by a homegrown talent, Paul Dean, could stand proudly in the company of those of Sibelius and Mahler.” Daily Review

His Symphony, premiered and commissioned by the Australian World Orchestra, was first performed in Canberra on 2nd June 2021, followed by performances in Sydney and Melbourne.

Future commissions include a solo work for Australian cellist Blair Harris, a Septet for the Melbourne Ensemble and a Double Bass concerto for the Australian virtuoso, Phoebe Russell.

Paul is an endorsed D’Addario Artist and plays D’Addario Reserve Evolution Bb Clarinet reeds and mouthpieces.

Last updated 2021