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News > College Life > Rock Icon Don Walker at Formal Dinner

Rock Icon Don Walker at Formal Dinner

Recently, Mr Don Walker, Australian songwriter and founding member of the Australian music group Cold Chisel was the College's guest of honour for a formal dinner to celebrate his achievements.

The dinner presented a golden opportunity for students and members of the College Community to delve into the extraordinary life of an individual who initially pursued a degree in Physics during the 1970s before embarking on a remarkable path of creative songwriting, ultimately establishing himself as a musical powerhouse in our country.

Also in attendance were: 
Professor Matthew Hindson (Deputy Head of School and Deputy Dean of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music)
Dr Kevin Hunt (Lecturer in Jazz Piano, Sydney Conservatorium of Music)
Mr Derek Watt (Former General Manager of Symphony Australia and Opera Australia)
Mr Tate Sheridan (Professional musician and keyboard player for Elton John)
Mr Dallas McInerney (Chief Executive Officer of Catholic   Schools NSW)
Mr John Coorey (Chairman of the St John’s College Council)
Professor Bernadette Tobin (Former Chair of St John’s College Council)

and other guests as well as 40 lucky parents of current students.

Don Walker was introduced by College alumnus Mr Andrew Coorey, who also conducted a Q&A at the end of Don’s speech, both of which were very well-received by students and parents alike.

The College is very grateful to Don, who spoke of the importance of bucking trends and going against the herd mindset when it comes to one’s professional life, as well as sharing valuable anecdotal advice for those facing tough times in their lives. 

Photos from the evening can be viewed here. (Password: RealignChaos)
Highlights of the evening are available here.
Don’s Q&A with Andrew Coorey is available here.

There were two Cold Chisel hits performed on the evening, the first, “Breakfast at Sweethearts” and later “Choir Girl” - both pieces were written by our special guest. These pieces were performed by College students, and accompanied on piano by our College Director of Music, Mr Richard Perrignon. 

Don was thanked by second-year student and Palladian Group Vocal Ensemble leader Claudia Tynan. Claudia noted the diverse and interesting path Don’s life has taken, and thanked Don for his kind, humourous and wise words imparted to all those present in the Hall that evening.  

The College is equally grateful to the many distinguished guests who attended the dinner and inspired our students, including composers, concert pianists, industry executives, and die-hard Cold Chisel fans. A special thanks to Chair of College Council Mr John Coorey and Andrew Coorey for their instrumental efforts (pun intended) in bringing Don to St John’s College. We look forward to hosting other luminaries of music, culture and the arts at the College in the future.

 

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