Featured Composer: Lachlan Davidson


Lachlan has played the saxophone since he was twelve years old, professionally since 1984. Initially studying classical technique at school and completing A.Mus.A, he went on to graduate with distinction from the jazz course at the Victorian College of the Arts before launching into a career in the jazz/commercial scene in Melbourne.

He began teaching at the same time and has taught at Presbyterian Ladies' College as well as being resident arranger and composer there. An accomplished doubler on flute, clarinet and oboe, Lachlan works as a freelance musician in Melbourne in a variety of settings. He has featured with Stevie Wonder and John Farnham, played with Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, and Maria Schneider and appeared on many CDs and on the soundtracks of many films. He featured on the film Peaches on solo clarinet, the score by David Hirschfelder.

Recently he has been writing and playing for the TV shows Dancing with the Stars and It Takes Two. He leads his own jazz quartet, “unLokked” which released a CD A Hot Night in Burwood in May 2000. Another album is in production. He has composed and arranged the score to a new musical version of The Getting of Wisdom. He has appeared as a soloist three times with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and plays lead alto with the Australian Art Orchestra and the Daryl Mckenzie Jazz Orchestra and Soprano sax with the Melbourne saxophone quartet.

He is also a published composer of solo saxophone, saxophone quartet and bigband works and writes songs too.

Lachlan currently teaches music at Caulfield Grammar School and Classical and Jazz Saxophone, plus Composition, at Monash University.

Lachlan is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence and great music. Lachlan is also a Mini Quest Catamaran Champion and can juggle four balls at once.

Lachlan Davidson's new work Trio for Fred was premiered in PLEXUS: Progressions on 1 July 2015 at the Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre.

Trio for Fred (2015)

How do you represent or pay tribute to forty years of life in ten minutes of music?

Well you can only really allow the music to be inspired by moments in that life.

Fred lived a full life’s worth in her short time yet still had so much more to give.

Though I knew her best in her time at secondary school as her saxophone teacher, her other periods are not unknown to me and she and her family have been (and still are) good friends to me.

Movement 1: Birth to Grade 6. A quirky and unusual kid wearing thick glasses. And playing the oboe was how Fred arrived at PLC in year 7. This movement takes on the journey to that point.

Movement 2. Sister Jazz. Fred and her friends formed this jazz band early in her schooling and it lasted throughout her time at PLC, with me as their guide but not their leader. They loved playing “Sister Sadie”among other classic standards. “Blue and Sentimental” was a tune Fred played in her lessons, with a remarkable interpretation. She really found herself during these years, growing in confidence and self awareness.

Movement 3. Living to the Max. Fred loved the outdoors and doing meaningful stuff. She pushed hard and did lots, eventually finding a kindred spirit in her husband Scott, and doing lots more including having three splendid daughters and helping establish their family business, The Bright Brewery. She made her mark on the world for sure. Thanks Fred.

– Lok Davidson