That special moment in Thailand


Me, playing my violin in New York City in 1973.

When I was a child, my parents never bought us a stereo, as they simply were not interested in music.  So, I depended on the radio to listen to rock and roll.  I also enjoyed choral music in church.

As a college student, I lived with my grandmother, who, unlike my parents, owned a stereo.  I began buying LPs, usually Broadway musicals and pop music, and was able to listen to these recordings every day.

After graduating from the University of Hawaii in 1968, I embarked on my solo trip around the world.  It was in Thailand that I fell in love with classical music.  A Christian missionary lent me a violin and invited me to rehearse with the Pro Musica Orchestra at the German Embassy.  The orchestra was comprised of Thai, Australian, and American musicians and conducted by a German.

I already had a rudimentary knowledge of the violin, as I had taken lessons for three years in Hawaii as a young teenager.

Well, long story short, I sat on the sofa in the music room and heard the Bach Double Violin Concerto for the first time. Awesome!  I could not believe that two Thai men could play their violins so beautifully.  Just imagine:  German Baroque music performed in Thailand.  Tears streamed down my cheeks as I listened to this exquisite music.

I joined the orchestra and a Thai prince lent me his spare violin, which was better than the Christian missionary’s violin. The prince played first violin and I played second violin.  I wasn’t very good, but I did try to keep up with the orchestra.

To this day, whenever I hear the Bach Double Violin Concerto, I recall that special moment in Thailand, when I heard it for the first time and fell in love with classical music.


7 Responses to “That special moment in Thailand”

  1. Olga Says:

    So interesting. I think I might have assumed you were a prodigy brought up by classical musicians because of your love for classical music.

  2. SchmidleysScribblins Says:

    What a wonderful memory. You have led an interesing life. How wonderful someone captured your special moment on film.

  3. Christine Says:

    Lovely memories of a special time Gigi!

  4. DeniseinVA Says:

    This is a lovely story Gigi, You have led such an interesting life.

  5. Kay G. Says:

    What an absolutely wonderful story! And I love the photo of you playing the violin, so beautiful!

  6. Tom Sightings Says:

    I wish I had your talent … I struggled thru violin lessons for about 2 years, until my lack of progress was so evident even my parents agreed I should give it up.

  7. Linda Reeder Says:

    I really like this post! I enjoy learning people’s histories and how they become who they are.
    And what a beauty you were!

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