Justin Beere holding clarinet

Justin Beere

Australian Hometown(s): Melbourne
Education: Australian National Academy of Music; Queensland Conservatorium of Music; University of Tasmania Conservatorium of Music

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Justin is the Associate Principal Clarinet of Orchestra Victoria and the founding Artistic Director of the Melbourne Chamber Players. Justin has enjoyed a varied career, guesting regularly with leading Symphony Orchestras and chamber music festivals across Australia, New Zealand and Canada. Justin has appeared on numerous live broadcasts for ABC and 3mbs radio, Radio New Zealand, Opera Europa, and ABC Classics.

As a chamber musician, Justin has worked with leading chamber ensembles, Orava Quartet, Flinders Quartet, Arcadia Winds, Hindemith Wind Quintet, and the Melbourne Ensemble. He has also performed in the Port Fairy Music Festival, Peninsula Summer Music Festival, Bendigo Festival, Melbourne Festival, Music by the Springs, the Banff Summer Music Festival (Canada) and the Mackay Chamber Music Festival.

Passionate about new Australian music, Justin has commissioned many new works by Australian composers and has performed with award-winning new music ensembles Syzygy, Arcko Symphonic Project, Opus House and was a founding member of the Rubiks Collective. Memorable premieres include works by Deborah Cheetham, Nigel Sabin, Paul Dean, Brett Dean, Sam Smith, and Matthew Laing. Justin is also the director of the Continuo Commissioning Circle, a Victoria-based initiative to support the creation of new chamber music by local composers.

As an Alumnus and Fellow of the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM), his teachers have included David Thomas, Paul Dean, Stephen Kenyon, and Floyd Williams. He has also performed in masterclasses with clarinetists Andrew Marriner, Michael Collins, Paul Meyer and Dimitri Ashkenazy, Thorsten Johanns, James Campbell, and Frank Celata to name a few. On full scholarship, Justin undertook study in the Professional Performance Program at ANAM, a Master of Music Research degree at the Queensland Conservatorium and several post-graduate degrees on an orchestral woodwind scholarship at the University of Tasmania Conservatorium of Music. He was also the winner of the Nelle Ashdown Memorial Award in 2011 and Robert and Elizabeth Albert Scholarship in 2019.

Justin is active as a music educator with extensive experience teaching in schools across Queensland and Victoria. He is has acted as associate lecturer at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and has also conducted masterclasses for the Queensland Conservatorium of Music. He looks forward to joining the Melbourne Conservatorium Young Artists Academy staff in 2022.

Last updated 2022

Philip Arkinstall

Australian Hometown(s): Sydney & Melbourne
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Philip has been the associate principal clarinet of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra since 2008. He was Principal of the Malaysian Philaharmonic in KL for 11 years prior to  that, and has appeared as guest principal  with every Australian orchestra except Adelaide. Philip has worked with the ACO, the Camerata Bern and the MCO amongst others and is a founding member of the Plexus Trio with Monica Curro and Stefan Cassomenos. He is also a founder of the  Melbourne Ensemble septet which is currently artist in residence at the MSO.

Philip has appeared as soloist with the Sydney, Melbourne, Queensland, West Australian and Tasmanian, Corpus Medicorum and Zelman symphony orchestras and also with the Malaysian and Royal Melbourne philharmonics in repertoire ranging from Mozart to Heinze. He was the young performer of the year for 2MBSFM in 1996 and for the ABC in 1997.

Philip teaches at Melbourne University and has been a guest teacher at ANAM, Monash, ANU and NMC.  He studied with Peter Jenkin at the Sydney Con, Valentin Sacharov in Strasbourg and earlier with Stephen Kenyon and  Bernard Wattelet. 

Last updated 2021

Francesco (Frank) Celata

Australian Hometown(s): Melbourne & Sydney
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music; Victorian College of the Arts

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Mr Frank Celata is Associate Principal Clarinet with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and an AWO Board Member. Mr Celata graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts 1987, prior to that he studied, and is now a lecturer, at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

He is a founding member of the chamber ensemble the Sydney Soloists and is a member of the New Sydney Wind Quintet. In 2013 he accepted the position of Lecturer in Orchestral and Chamber Music at the Conservatorium of Music in Hobart.

On several occasions between 2003 and 2009 he appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra as guest Principal Clarinet, performing on international tours and recordings. More recently he appeared as guest Principal Clarinet with the Philharmonia Orchestra of London touring internationally and recording with them. Frank plays Principal Clarinet with the Australian World Orchestra, comprising 110 of Australia’s leading musicians drawn from 47 orchestras around the world.

Last updated 2018

Paul Champion

Australian Hometown(s): Sydney & Melbourne
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music High School

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Paul has been Principal Clarinet of  Orchestra Victoria since 2004. During this time he has appeared as a soloist with OV in Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, Rossini’s Introduction, Theme and Variations and Weber’s Concertino.

He has been Guest Principal Clarinet with the Australian World Orchestra (2015 tour of India), Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, and the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. Paul is a currently Lecturer at the University of Melbourne, Monash University, and teaches in his private studio.

Paul was born in Sydney and studied with Mark Walton, Head of Woodwind at the Sydney Conservatorium. After leaving school Paul studied Commerce at the University of New South Wales and began learning from Frank Celata, Associate Principal of the Sydney Symphony. In 1997 he gained his Licentiate of Music (LMus) Diploma through the AMEB, a year later the Fellowship of Music (FMus) Diploma, and during this time recorded a CD of Australian clarinet music.

He is also co-founder and CEO of education platform Online Virtuoso.

Last updated 2018

Jonathan Craven

Australian Hometown(s): Brisbane & Melbourne
Education: Queensland Conservatorium, Royal Academy of Music, London

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Jonathan studied Clarinet with Floyd Williams at the Queensland Conservatorium. When he finished school, he was accepted into the Diploma of Music (Performance) course, and during this time he won several prizes for both solo performing and chamber music.

Upon completion of the Diploma, Jonathan travelled to London where he received a licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music.

Jonathan moved to Perth to teach at the West Australian Conservatorium of Music when he returned to Australia. In 1993 he was appointed Principal Bass Clarinet for the West Australian Symphony Orchestra (WASO). Three years later Jonathan became Associate Principal Clarinet in the same orchestra.

Jonathan worked freelance in Melbourne and Tasmania until he was appointed to the position of Principal Bass Clarinet with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in 2001.

Last updated 2020

Paul Dean

Australian Hometown: Brisbane
Education: Queensland Conservatorium

Paul Dean Bio

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 will be first performed in Canberra on June 2, followed by performances in Sydney June 3 and Melbourne June 4.

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 updatedMay 2021

Philip Green

Australian Hometown(s): Sydney & Melbourne
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Clarinettist Phil Green studied in Sydney with Frank Celata and Mark Walton. He worked amongst several of New Zealand and Australia’s leading orchestras before joining the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra as Co-Principal Clarinet in 2003.

He has been active as both a soloist and chamber musician and has regularly been involved in introducing new works by top NZ composers including Ross Harris, Anthony Ritchie and Gareth Farr. For Chamber Music New Zealand he has toured nationally with the acclaimed NZ String Quartet and especially with the wind quintet Zephyr. He has performed as part of the new music ensemble Stroma and tutored clarinet at the New Zealand School of Music for 10 years.

In 2014 Phil was pleased to return to Australia and was appointed Associate Principal Clarinet of the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, (now Opera Australia Orchestra).

Last updated 2020

Som Howie playing clarinet photo

Som Howie

Australian Hometown: Sydney
Education: Royal College of Music in Stockholm; Sydney Conservatorium of Music

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Som Howie is the solo Clarinettist of the Danish Chamber Players. Originally from Sydney Australia, Som studied his Masters with Hermann Stefánsson and Andreas Sundén at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, and his Bachelor with Frank Celata at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

As an orchestral musician, Som has performed with major orchestras around the world including; Copenhagen Philharmonic, The Swedish Radio Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Swedish Chamber Orchestra, Royal Swedish Opera, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic, Sydney Symphony, Australian Opera and Ballet, and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

Som has toured to Edinburgh with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and to India with the Australian World Orchestra.

In 2016 Som was selected for the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra Academy. Previous to this, Som has held academy positions with the Sydney Symphony, and London Philharmonic Orchestra’s Future Firsts Scheme. Som has attended masterclasses with; Sabine Meyer, Andrew Marriner, Martin Fröst, and Yehuda Gilad.

As a soloist, Som has performed concertos with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Western Australia Symphony Orchestra, Willoughby Symphony Orchestra, the Southbank Sinfonia in the UK and in 2016 he recorded English composer Geoffrey Hanson’s Clarinet Concerto with the London Mozart Players.

Som was a prize winner for the Royal Overseas League (ROSL) Annual Competition, and as a result toured with his trio, the Dolmen Ensemble on behalf of ROSL to; Malta, Scotland, and New Zealand.

In 2015 Som recorded his first solo album with his Father, David Howie. The album is titled ‘Premiere Rhapsody’ and was produced by UK based record label, Cala Records.

Last updated 2022

Benjamin Mellefont with clarinet

Benjamin Mellefont

Australian Hometown: Sydney
Education: Royal College of Music, London

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Benjamin Mellefont was born in Sydney, Australia. He was appointed Principal Clarinet of the London Philharmonic Orchestra in 2019, having previously held the same position with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, and has performed with both orchestras as a soloist. He regularly appears as Guest Principal with many of the orchestras in the UK and Australia, and at festivals such as Salzburg, Edinburgh and Aldeburgh.

A keen proponent of contemporary music, Benjamin has been a core and founding member of Explore Ensemble since 2012, with whom he has been involved in numerous premieres and commissions, including play/ directing the UK premiere of Kaija Saariaho’s Figura for Solo Clarinet and Ensemble. He has also appeared with other chamber groups such as Ensemble 360 and London Sinfonietta.

Benjamin graduated in 2015 from the Royal College of Music with First Class Honours as the Tegner Scholar, having studied with Barnaby Robson, Richard Hosford, Timothy Lines and Michael Collins. Whilst there he won the Clarinet Prize and Concerto Competition. Since 2019 he has been a Professor of Clarinet at the Royal Academy of Music, and also gives masterclasses and coaches at the Royal College of Music and Guildhall School.

When not playing clarinet, he enjoys producing electronic music, cooking and moonlighting as a barista. 


Last updated 2022

Dean Newcomb

Australian Hometown: Adelaide
Education: Australian National Academy of Music; Griffith University

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Dean Newcomb is currently the Principal Clarinettist with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, a position he has held since 2008. Dean has performed as guest Principal Clarinet with various orchestras in Australia and overseas including the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Auckland Philharmonia and was offered the Principal Clarinet position with The Macau Orchestra before deciding to settle in Adelaide. His solo concerto performances have been met with critical acclaim, with reviewers praising his “musical gifts, technical finesse and outstanding ability” (The Advertiser).

Dean regularly performs as a recital and chamber musician with Australia’s leading ensembles including the Australian String Quartet, The Australia Ensemble, Southern Cross Soloists, the Hamer String Quartet for the opening of the Melbourne Recital Centre and the world premiere of Arthur Benjamin’s century-old Clarinet Quintet with the Goldner String Quartet. His active involvement in music education includes giving masterclasses, lecturing and tutoring at the Elder Conservatorium of Music, tutoring for the Australian Youth Orchestra’s orchestral and chamber music seasons and adjudicating at the Lisbon International Clarinet Competition in Portugal. Dean Newcomb is a D’Addario Woodwinds artist.

Last updated 2018