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HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Harps in Chiang Mai

Star Alliance CEO’s introduced to the ‘sticky rice culture’

Junior super-star ‘M’ sings at CMU

Lanna Dog Rescue helping dogs and temples

Dates for the Chiang Mai Classics announced

German expatriate celebrates 80th birthday

Harps in Chiang Mai

A perfect Christmas gift?

Cory Croymans

Last month’s overwhelmingly successful concert by the Chiang Mai Symphony Orchestra brought our community several surprises. Maybe the largest one was the fact that there is now a real symphony orchestra with over 60 musicians from 18 schools. Another surprise was the presentation of a real harp and its excellent performer, Judith Utley.

Judith Utley has brought her collection of harps to Chiang Mai.

The history of the Harp begins in antiquity. The oldest remains of a harp were found in the grave of the Sumerian Queen Shub-Ad who lived around 3,500 BC. Furthermore, many paintings showed that the harp was a popular instrument in ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome.

Judith Utley has brought her collection of harps to Chiang Mai. She has a grand and a semi-grand concert harp which are played with the fingers and with the feet, which operate seven pedals. These pedal harps, which have 47 strings, are relatively ‘modern’ instruments that were developed shortly after 1800. Judith will play music from Hไndel and the contemporary French composer Bernard Andres on one of these harps during the Chiang Mai Classics chamber music concerts in Kad Suan Kaew theatre.

Judith also has a Celtic harp, which is smaller and has no pedals, on which she will play the Celtic Concerto, composed by Laura Zaerr.

Judith’s school in South Dakota (USA) played an important role in her musical education. When 12-year-old Judith first touched the strings of a harp, she knew that this instrument would stay with her for the rest of her life. Fortunately, her parents shared this view and bought her the grand concert harp that is now with her in Chiang Mai.

Judith has been working hard to further the popularity of the harp here in Thailand. She was closely connected with the set-up of the Tamnak Prathom Harp Centre in Bangkok, which now has 30 students. Here in Chiang Mai she mainly teaches private students but the interest in harp playing is growing steadily.

Judith is one of the 20 musicians that form the Chiangmai Classics group which next year will organise three concerts with professional musicians (end of January, February and March). Season tickets for all three concerts will be on sale from mid-December till January 25 at the Chiangmai Mail, Amari Rincome Hotel and Rimping Supermarkets. For more information and a detailed concert program, please e-mail [email protected] or call 01.8811004.


Star Alliance CEO’s introduced to the ‘sticky rice culture’

Staff reporters

Kanok Abhiradee, Thai Airways International (THAI) president invited the CEO’s of the Star Alliance member airlines to northern Thailand for what the MC of the evening, the beautiful Miss Thailand 2000, described as “A night to remember where they could experience first hand, the ‘sticky rice culture’ of northern Thailand.”

15 members of the Star Alliance linked together.

The Mandarin Oriental Dhara Dhevi presented 180 performers to entertain the 180 guests, with Kanok Abhiradee saying that he felt proud to receive his friends and Star Alliance members in the unique surroundings of the Mandarin Oriental Dhara Dhevi Hotel. The surrounding, the unique entertainment, the relaxing music and the food provided another step forward to bring us together, to enjoy and understand each others’ culture, he said.

The Star Alliance consists of Air Canada, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, bmi, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, SAS, Singapore Airlines, Spainair, Thai Airways International, United, SAA, US Airways and VARIG.


Junior super-star ‘M’ sings at CMU

Nopniwat Krailerg

The concert given by ‘M’ (Atthapol Prakobkong), a Chiang Mai boy and now the latest Thai singing sensation, was held at CMU convention hall. He returned to his hometown, Chiang Mai, and performed his first solo concert, supported by the Cottage Restaurant, where he previously used to sing.

M (Atthrapol Prakobkong), the latest champion in the Thailand Star contest

The 600 people in the audience covered all age groups, and his performance comprised of many Thai favorites, backed up by some international numbers.

M said that this concert was for the fans who had encouraged him during the contest held this year. One result of winning this contest is that he appreciates the greetings of Chiang Mai people who remember him and treat him like their family. His next project is to launch an album and he is also on the lookout for some acting positions.

M performed his first solo concert, supported by the Cottage Restaurant where he previously used to sing.

He says to Chiang Mai youth that if they want to fulfill their dream, just do it, if it does not cause any disturbance to anybody. This generation should express themselves in a positive way, and especially do not get involved with drugs.

“Since Chiang Mai Municipality gave him the youth award, he tries to be a good model for the young society. He wants to tell teenagers that having a friend who uses drugs is not as cool as being in the world of music,” he added.


Lanna Dog Rescue helping dogs and temples

Autsadaporn Kamthai

To assist stray dogs in Chiang Mai, the Lanna Dog Rescue group has given support to the four community temples of Wat Suan Dok, Wat Pa Daeng, Wat Pan Tong and Wat Don Chan, all in Chiang Mai.

Roshan Dhunjibhoy (right) from the Lanna Dog Rescue takes care of dogs at Wat Pa Daeng.

With people apparently growing selfish and lacking compassion, numerous unwanted dogs have been dropped off at the temples to let the monks and temple children bear the burden. This has resulted in the Lanna Dog Rescue running a pilot project to rescue and assist these dogs.

Monks and representatives from the four temples, the Lanna Dog Rescue members, veterinarians, veterinarian students and people who have a concern for abandoned dogs met at Wat Pa Daeng on December 11.

Monks, temple children and the Lanna Dog Rescue members discuss the stray dog situation in Chiang Mai.

Under the proposed scheme, the stray dogs will be given general health care, mange treatment and be enrolled in a neutering program.

Phra Kampol from Wat Pa Daeng admitted that a significant number of dogs were left to the temple to take care of but sometimes the temple did not have enough financial support to treat mange and neuter the dogs.

Roshan Dhunjibhoy, Dr Otome Hutheesing and Dr Wilaiwan Petsophonsakul initiated the Lanna Dog Rescue. The special interest group is diverse, covering a founder member of the German Heinrich Boell Foundation, a former TV journalist, a sociologist, a group of veterinarians and assistants, and an immunologist.

Main objectives of the Lanna Dog Rescue are to increase awareness of the benefits and needs of dogs as helpful companions, and to manage the stray dogs and their unwanted offspring problems in residential areas, find loving family homes for stray dogs, and create a better environment in which humans and dogs can live together.

Lanna Dog Rescue is seeking financial aid and contributions of dog food or materials to assist the underprivileged dogs. It also encourage sponsorships for its activities such as “adopt a dog”, where a modest donation will go towards the wellbeing and treatment of a dog of your choice.

To help the Lanna Dog Rescue and the temples you can send a financial contribution to Mrs Wilaiwan Petsophonsakul or Mrs Roshan Dhunjibhoy, account number 566-4 34362-7, Siam Commercial Bank Public Company Limited, Faculty of Medicine Branch, Chiang Mai, Thailand.

For more information, please contact 0-5321-2810, 0-5322-1863 (English speaking) and 0-5343-2362 (Thai speaking - daytime) or send an email to [email protected]


Dates for the Chiang Mai Classics announced

Cory Croymans-Plaghki

Following the previous successful performance by the Chiang Mai Symphony Orchestra at the Kad Theatre, a series of classical concerts has been arranged for Chiang Mai’s music lovers.

These concerts will be called Chiang Mai Classics and aim to support our classical musicians as well as develop more interest in classical concerts. The proceeds will be shared between the musicians and the New Life Foundation, under the Patronage of H.R.H. The Princess Mother.

Each concert will feature a variety of instruments, composers, and performers. For each concert, the music has been carefully selected to present Quartets, Trio’s, and Duets. In January, there will be Saint-Saens famous ‘Swan’ piece for cello and harp which will be played by Karin Mekara and Judith Utley, as well as Beethoven’s Trio for clarinet, cello and piano by Chaipruck Mekara, Karin Mekara and David Wilson.

The first three concerts are scheduled for Friday January 28, Friday February 25, and Saturday March 12, 2005.

Season Tickets for these concerts will be sold at a special discount rate till 26 January 2005 with the tickets at 700, 400, and 100 baht per concert and available at the following outlets: Rimping Supermarkets, Amari Rincome, Chiangmai Mail, and Kad Suan Kaew information desk. Single concert tickets will be available at 900, 600, and 200 baht per concert.

If you want to support this initiative or buy your season tickets, please email [email protected] loxinfo.co.th or fax 0 5380 4290. Cory Croymans-Plaghki, Fundraising Coordinator, New Life Foundation, No 1, Thapae Road, Chiang Mai 50100 Tel.0 5381 9352 (Thai) Tel.0 1881 1004 (English).


German expatriate celebrates 80th birthday

Reinhard Hohler

November 23 saw a special birthday party at Chiang Mai’s The Pub. Fifty well-wishers from the ever-growing German community showed up to celebrate the 80th birthday of Karlernst Rosswog, better known as “Carlos.”

Karlernst Rosswog, better known as “Carlos”, recently celebrated his 80th birthday at Chiang Mai’s The Pub.

Born in Berlin in 1924, Carlos experienced the bitter consequence of the Second World War and was sent to the eastern front in June to lose one of his arms just two months later. Never giving up on life, he started to study law and later went into film producing. Coming to Thailand in 1975, he became interested in the gem trade.

When he married a Chiang Mai lady in 1979, he decided to move to Chiang Mai in 1982 and has stayed here ever since.

Entertainment was supplied by Italian Guitar John, while the special German food and sausages came from Guenter Dingeldein.

The beer garden atmosphere in The Pub was a guarantee for the wellbeing of the guests leaving Carlos as the perfect birthday host.