Donald Donnett

Don Donnett has been a member of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra since 1962 (his senior year of high school) and has been principal timpanist, his current position, since 1967. He has the distinction of having played under the baton of all four of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra’s conductors.

In addition to performing with the DPO, he has extensive experience in a multitude of other musical venues, including Dayton Opera, summer theater, pit orchestras, circus bands, various professional concert bands and studio recording. He has performed with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, as well as with the Springfield and Middletown orchestras. He also freelances in both big band and combo groups in the area, as well as doing some private teaching as his schedule allows.

Don is a graduate of the University of Dayton and received his Master of Music degree from Wright State University. He taught music, primarily as a band director, for many years, first in the Huber Heights City School district and then in Vandalia-Butler City Schools, retiring in 2004. In addition to having participated in the SPARK program for several years, he continues to stay active in education, guest teaching in area schools including Oakwood, Beavercreek and Vandalia. Don has also been associated with the University of Dayton’s Continuing Education program.

Interests outside of music include family time with his wife Judy, his daughters Stephanie and Leslie, his grandsons Jack, Archer, Oliver, and Anderson, and his sons-in-law John (Stephanie) & Jackson (Leslie). Don also enjoys movies, reading and sports, and he is an avid golfer.

Photos by Andy Snow