Donal Bannister is principal trombone with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. In addition to teaching trombone at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, he also teaches bass trumpet, orchestral euphonium, arranges for brass and coaches chamber music. Originally from Dublin, Donal’s musical education was at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Trinity College Dublin (where he was a scholar), and the Eastman School of Music, New York (where he was a Fulbright scholar). Whilst at TCD he did research into the ‘Sturm und Drang’ symphonies of Haydn.
Previously in his career he was a member of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and is a former principal trombone of the Irish Youth Orchestra. In addition to his work for the BBC National Orchestra of Wales he maintains a busy freelance career, appearing as a guest with most of the UK’s major orchestras, including the London Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and others.
Donal’s musical interests are wide ranging; as well as orchestral work, he is passionate about instrumental development, often performing on period instruments, and has spent much time conducting community orchestras and brass band. Donal is also a published arranger of music for brass.