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Chiang Mai Symphony Orchestra’s first full performance at Kad Theatre

Audience spellbound with music from Antoine Garth and David Wilson

“Arty” wines for Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai Symphony Orchestra’s first full performance at Kad Theatre

Nopniwat Krailerg

The New Life Foundation, under the patronage of HRH the Princess Mother, will organize a Chiang Mai Symphony Orchestra concert on October 2 at Kad Theatre, Kad Suan Kaew Shopping Complex, to celebrate its 40th anniversary as a fund-raising event.

From left, Somboon Sooprasert, secretary and Cory Croymans-Plaghki, of the New Life Foundation.

The foundation takes care of 1,065 physically or mentally handicapped Thais located in many villages in Chiang Dao and Hang Dong in Chiang Mai and Li in Lamphun. It also includes two homes for the elderly and two kindergartens in Li and Chiang Dao. The foundation also gives scholarships to orphaned children.

The performing artists at the concert will be the well-known “A Cappella 7” group from Bangkok and the newly established Chiang Mai Symphony Orchestra (CMSO) with 80 musicians from 18 schools in Chiang Mai. They will play western and Thai classical music on western instruments.

The ambitious concert program will include Mozart’s Concerto for Harp and Flute as well as Haydn’s beautiful Toy Symphony.

Ticket prices are 1,000 baht, 500 baht and 100 baht (for students). Tickets will be available at the foundation’s office as well as at the Red Cross Healthcare station (close to the American Consulate-General), Suriwongse Bookstore, Payap University’s Music Department, Kad Suan Kaew’s Information Desk (4th floor), “Welcome to Chiangmai” Magazine on Nah Wat Gate Road, Chiangmai Mail and Amari Rincome Hotel.

Sponsors of the event are Chiangmai Mail, Kad Theater, GD-1 Spirulina, Ricoh Thailand, Galliana Creations, Amari Rincome Hotel, and Rimping Supermarket.

A tax-deductible receipt can be issued for donations at the foundation’s office on the evening of the concert. For more information, please visit the website www. asianhealingartscenter.com/new-life-foundation.htm

Audience spellbound with music from Antoine Garth and David Wilson

Classics paired with musicals and jazz

Michael and Marion Vogt

It was one of those evenings at Gong Dee Studio where one wonders if this is just a gallery in Chiang Mai or if it might be a stage in one of the world’s capitals.

Antoine Garth, who likes the grandeur of classical music, but also the soulfulness of jazz, has appeared with the San Francisco Symphony, Philharmonic Baroque Orchestra, and the San Francisco Opera, and has sung professionally throughout the United States for the past 10 years. He chose a dramatic repertoire for this night.

Antoine Garth and pianist David Wilson were superlative partners.

He started off with Latin Church music, composed by Georg Friedrich Handel, followed by dramatic German church songs from Heinrich Schuetz and followed this up with a song by Claude Debussy. His voice and gestures were sometimes operatic, but always exerting force, warmth, drama, or irony, depending on his interpretation of the lyrics.

After the short intermission he warned the listeners that the songs by Stephen Sondheim might be sometimes offensive and rated PG-13, but they also include the ‘dos’ and ‘don’t’ requests of any musician during a concert. These brought out the comic talents and his effortless acting proved crisp, effective, to the point. His repertoire of vocal coloring seemed without limits and Antoine had the audience smiling, clapping and almost in tears when he changed from the quicksilver ‘Buddy’s Blues’ to ‘Not a day goes by’, in remembrance of the victims of 9/11. He created contrasts between the satirical ‘Story of Lucy and Jessie’, followed up with a strong ‘Being alive’ which was tender and expressed the subtle range of tenor Antoine Garth.

Garth and pianist David Wilson were superlative partners, blending with harmonic confidence and style, casting a spell on the audience and had them totally under control.

“Arty” wines for Chiang Mai

“fin” - fabulous is needed

Marion Vogt

Take an international marketing expert, a creative and experienced event organizer, mix well with quality wines from boutique wineries that are not known to the masses and create the image of exclusivity. That is the raison d’etre behind “fin” - fabulous is needed.

Jan Ganser, ‘fin’ MD with Rooj Changtrakul, owner of Rachamankha Hotel and art lover.

As Chiang Mai becomes a meeting place for artists, alternative lifestyles and sophisticated individuals, a city where more than one five star hotel will open in the very near future, it is not surprising that there is a niche for exceptionally well selected wines. Wines that are not judged solely on price but on having that subjective ingredient called “class”, their own unique character and reflect the lifestyle we all aspire to embrace.

MD Jan Ganser and director Benjawan Wisootsat are “fin”. Together they combine art with wine, representing wineries that do not see winemaking as their toil but as their life, who do not sell mass market products but have the philosophy that art and wine go together and cannot be separated.

Chateau Bel Air Bordeaux Rose with an art label, created by Leon Dolle, the artist for the first ‘fin’ art and wine edition 2003.

The wines which were available to taste at the Rachamankha Hotel Chiang Mai exhibited that singular characteristic. Jan Ganser and Benjawan Wisootsat brought a selection from Austria, Germany, France, Italy, Portugal, Chile and Australia. They were wines which Jan Ganser knew the history, where the bottles were decorated with art labels, designed by artists who created the label according to the taste, designed to both contradict and to attract. He told the stories of these wines created with a soul, yet still affordable, despite superior quality.

It will soon be seen if the up-market Chiang Mai hotels and restaurants will offer these products as does the Oriental’s ‘La Normandie’ or the Four Seasons in Bangkok.

You can find out more and view the range (or even order on-line) at www.take-fin.com.