HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

U.S. Consulate General Chiang Mai celebrates Earth Day 2005

Rotary Presidents-Elect Meet in Trang

Songkran hangover

An evening to remember


Audience impressed by student recital

Barry Snyder Piano Recital on May 28 at A.U.A.

U.S. Consulate General Chiang Mai celebrates Earth Day 2005

Watcharapong Jingkaujai

The U.S. Consulate General Chiang Mai celebrated the 35th commemoration of Earth Day to draw attention to the need to protect the world environment.

Mayor Boonlert Buranupakorn and US CG Beatrice Camp admire the works of art.

Schools, organizations, NGOs, environmental and civic groups were invited to paint posters on environmental themes at the consulate on April 21, 2005. The posters will be showcased on the consulate compound until May 3, before being returned to the artists.

Beatrice Camp, U.S. consul-general in Chiang Mai said, “On the 35th anniversary of the Earth Day celebrations today, the U.S. Consulate would like youngsters to pay more attention to world environment ...”

Chiang Mai Mayor Boonlert Buranupakorn said that it was very satisfying to learn that the U.S. Consulate also concentrates on the environment.

It truly shows a very friendly environment.

Rotary Presidents-Elect Meet in Trang

R. Lomax

Over five hundred Rotarians, including the presidents-elect or their representatives from each of the Rotary Clubs of Thailand, recently met in Trang for a leadership training conference. The current Rotary year is celebrating 100 years of Rotary with the motto of “Service Above Self”. Banners lining the streets of Trang from the airport to the hotel proclaimed the motto and announced the meeting.

Former Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai prepares to address Rotarians at their Saturday evening gathering.

On the first morning of the conference, presidents-elect had the opportunity to explore the diversity of clubs in Thailand. There are some 200 Rotary Clubs in the country. In most of them, Thai language alone is spoken. But there are several in which both the Thai and English languages are used. In addition, there are a Japanese-speaking and a Taiwanese Chinese-speaking clubs in Bangkok, and a French-speaking club in Pattaya. Eleven foreigners who live and work in Thailand are presidents-elect of various clubs. They are natives of France, Germany, Canada, Belgium, England, Ireland, Japan, Taiwan and the United States.

Xanxai Visitikul moderated the training session on cultural diversity. He is a member of Rotary Bangkok South and a past district governor. He is one of 60 Rotary trainers/facilitators in the country who have been trained by Rotary International.

Xanxai Visitkul (right), Past District Governor of the Rotary Club of Bangkok South and 2004-05 Regional Rotary Foundation Coordinator for 20 Rotary districts, gives advice to Rotary President Elect of Chiangmai West Frank Weicks.

Later, morning training focused on the characteristics of a successful club, the club president’s responsibilities and leadership qualities. In the afternoon, past district governors presented the Rotary constitution and by-laws. Representatives from each district gathered in separate groups to meet with their district governor. Presidents-elect from Chiang Mai and the north, District 3360, met with District Governor Tawii Tapingkae to discuss issues relevant to northern Thailand.

One of the highlights of the conference was Former Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai’s address to over 600 participants on tourism and ecology. He urged Rotarians to promote tourism but also to promote the preservation of Thai culture and the ecology of the country. He complimented Rotarians on their many tree-planting projects, and said that politicians and administrators may change, but Rotary-planted trees will remain many years after those who planted them are gone.

Songkran hangover

For revelers who had been drinking throughout the Songkran, or traditional Thai New Year period, the aftermath of the extended vacations can be an extended hangover.

But for the Ministry of Public Health, the post-Songkran period is also proving a headache, as hospitals and health centers needed to prepare for an influx of people left dazed and confused by drink.

Every year, hospitals are left to cope with people whose post-Songkran hangovers tip them over into a condition bordering on mental illness.

With Thailand holding the dubious accolade of being the 5th heaviest nation of drinkers in the world, the condition is a particularly severe one for the government to deal with.

According to statistics cited last week by Public Health Minister Suchai Charoenratanakul, people whose brains have been left addled by alcohol over the Songkran period tend to seek medical care around 5-7 days after the festivities have finished.

This year Dr. Suchai ordered psychiatric hospitals and other hospitals to reserve beds for the influx of post-drunken patients.

Dr. Suwat Mahatnirankul, director of Chiang Mai’s Suan Prung Hospital, agrees that there is a problem. He said that the hospital regularly sees a huge increase in alcohol-related conditions following major festivals.

Around 70 percent of those suffering from post-alcohol conditions tend to be men, he said, while the majority are of working age.

Most take between 3-7 days to rehabilitate, although in some cases it can take two weeks for confusion to abate.

Data from the World Health Organization suggests that one in three cases of mental illness is alcohol-related.

Such conditions exert both a social and an economic toll, with each patient costing around Bt10,000 to rehabilitate.

An evening to remember

Grace Charles

Saturday night was party night at the Imperial Mae Ping Hotel, when Cheryl Penney celebrated her birthday in style. The guests enjoyed a wonderful five course meal, and then she ‘expected them’ to party - and party they did!

Friends came from all over the world to celebrate at the Imperial Mae Ping Ballroom.

Cheryl loves to dance - and there was no way her birthday was going to pass her by without ALL the guests dancing the night away.

Steve and Cheryl Penney

Guests from all over the world traveled to Chiang Mai to share this very special birthday with Cheryl, and Cheryl, being the perfect hostess, made it an evening to remember.

The party was organized by Cheryl’s best friend, Lindy Pohl, who didn’t miss a detail - from the sparkling table decorations to the food and music. And there wasn’t a dry eye in the house when hubby Steve got up and sang, “You are so beautiful” to her.

Those of you who know Cheryl will applaud her ability to coordinate the activities of three children, look after Steve, attend dance classes, and stay looking young, stylish and calm. A lovely lady who deserved the tribute given to her on that special day!


Outstanding repertoire to be shown at Kad Theatre on May 7

Chiang Mai is in for a treat on May 7 when the Dancers’ Company from Brigham Young University takes things that were once only possible in the imagination and brings them to life. Balancing natural, fluid movements with exciting techniques, the company performs a variety of contemporary dance styles in its creative repertoire of classical, humorous, and spiritual works.

Amy Bastian and Alisa Poston perform in Genesis. The Dancers Company is one of the most widely toured Dance Companies of the United States.

Since its creation in 1974, the 16-member ensemble has become one of the most widely toured university dance groups in the United States. Internationally, The Dancers’ Company has toured South America, Asia, the Philippines, Japan, Turkey, Israel, South Africa, and India. In February 2002 the dancers had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to perform at the Conference Center during the Salt Lake Olympic Winter Games.

The Dancers’ Company show Imaginaire is fun and unique, a performance unlike that any audiences has ever experienced. The dancers believe that when they present a positive impression of dance, those watching will be able to appreciate the best in themselves. This year the ensemble will be visiting Thailand, Cambodia, and Taiwan. Their preliminary program includes a genesis dance, romantic duets, humorous dances to celebrate the creativity and resiliency of humankind as it pokes fun at classical dance and gives the audience a laugh. Also a dance called ‘Disintegration’. This is a reflection of the deterioration of society symbolized by the dancers moving in perfect unison and gradually moving toward chaos, yet finding strength in independence. For those who like more modern music, they will do a medley of a combination of African rhythms, funk, blues, and rap.

Lorene Hedman expresses the excitement of ‘Do not Remove under penalty of law’. In this show stopping piece dancers roll and leap off mini trampolines onto foam mattresses, creating hilarious shapes, and dance with a sort of frenetic franticness.

Chiangmai Ballet Academy will join with a 30 minute performance called ‘The Ugly Duckling through the Four Seasons’. The performance will be next Saturday May 7, 2005 at 7 p.m. at Kad Theatre, Kad Suan Kaew.

Tickets are priced at 100, 400. 500 and 1000 baht and are available from the Information counters on the ground floor at Kad Suan Kaew. Tel 0 5322 4444, at Suriwong Book Centre, Tel 0 5328 1052, from the ‘Chiangmai Ballet Academy’ at Tel 0 5330 6357 and at Chiangmai Mail Office at Tel. 0 5323 4102.

For more information please call Linda Buck 07 191 3807 or Cheryl Penney 01 764 7987.

Audience impressed by student recital

Nopniwat Krailerg

The audience was deeply impressed with the performance of the students when Voice Studio Entertainment, a renowned institute of music, song and dance organized the “1st Student Recital” on April 23 at Chiang Mai University’s Art and Culture Museum theatre.

Penny’s voice impresses the audience with international songs.

Much of the repertoire was performed by Voice Studio’s students who had studied for about four months. Piano and guitar, both Thai and international songs, hip hop and other dance styles were presented.

Students who were preparing to compete at Trinity College, England, on May 3 also presented their powerful voices, notably Feuanglada Prawang or organ impressed the audience greatly, and won acclaim for singing without amplification and only accompanied by a grand piano.

The Voice Studio provides courses to people who are interested in hip hop, tap dance, Latin jazz, cabaret, jazz dance and social dance. For more information, contact their branch at CM-Computer building, floor 3, room 303, or ring 0 5341 0100 # 303, or visit www.tvoicestudio.com

Danny Thaweerat on the guitar performs songs from Kalamatianos and Kaging Sea.

Barry Snyder Piano Recital on May 28 at A.U.A.

A.U.A. Chiang Mai in cooperation with D&M Music Studio proudly presents “Barry Snyder Piano Recital” performed by one of the best known pianists in North America and around the world for his brilliant, award-winning chamber music.

Barry Snyder

Barry Snyder won three prizes at the 1966 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition as well as the silver medal, Pan American Union. He will be in Chiang Mai on Saturday, May 28, commencing at 8 p.m. at A.U.A. Language Center on Rajdamnern Road.

Snyder’s extensive knowledge of the complete piano compositions has brought praise for his performances around the world and he is acclaimed worldwide for his impeccable technique and an instinctively graceful musicality as well as being a superb chamber music player.

Audiences all over the world will remember Barry Snyder for his truly outstanding performance in the concert halls throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, South America and Asia. He has appeared with the orchestras of Montreal, Atlanta, Houston, Baltimore, Detroit and Krakow with such conductors as Sixten Ehrling, David Zinman, Charles Dutoit, Robert Shaw and Leopold Stokowski.

The evening program includes works by Beethoven “Appassionata”, Sonata, Op.57, Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimental, Several Rachmaninoff Etudes tableaux, Op.39 and Chopin’s B Minor Sonata, Op.58.

The tickets are priced at 300 and 200 baht for students, available at the door at 7 p.m. For more information please call Khun Mongkol 01-682-8000.