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The Delights of a Friendship

Laurence Davies and Ohm C. Tayoon delight the audience and the author.

By Colin Jarvis

One of the great benefits of having friends is that they will often introduce you to activities that you did not know existed but which then enrich your life.
Every year I work with the Thai classical music department of the Department of Fine Art at Chulalongkorn University. There are usually in five of us working on this particular project and each year I have the opportunity to greet some old friends and say hello to some new ones.

Most of the people I work with have, over the years, become firm friends even though, sometimes, we can only meet once a year at Chulalongkorn.
Earlier this year I was delighted to meet a delightful man called Laurence Davies. He is a very retiring person and certainly not one to blow his own trumpet. Indeed he would not blow a trumpet as he is a pianist and a pianist of world class.

As we got to know each other I discovered that although he is Australian by birth he spent most of his working life in America working with many organisations such as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and worked for 18 years with the Lyric Opera of Chicago as assistant conductor. He has won many international awards and still, at the age of over 80, teaches and performs. I had been working with this man for several days before I even discovered he could play the piano. His achievements are such that I feel that he is someone I should pay homage to but he is such a nice, unassuming man that such feelings are really inappropriate, better just to enjoy his delightful company.

Unfortunately I was unable to hear him play during our work together at Chulalongkorn so I was delighted when he told me that he was performing at Duriyasilp College of Music at Payap University. He was performing with Khun Ohm C. Tayoon, a young Thai violinist who already has an international reputation.

The recital was a delight. The concert hall was small, intimate and very tranquil. The music was of a good standard that would not have been out of place at the Purcell room in the Royal Festival Hall.

I, and the friends I took, thoroughly enjoyed the evening and were delighted to discover that there are many concerts given at this venue throughout the year.
My new friend Laurence had introduced me to a new resource that will greatly increase the quality of my life.

If you have an interest in classical music I would strongly suggest that you check on the web at http://music.payap.ac.th as there is a very full programme of activities and I can promise you that the experience is thoroughly enjoyable.
So thank you Laurence for being my friend and introducing me to a delightful resource so close to my home.


Classical guitar performances

Jetjumnong Jongprasert and Padet Netpakdee performed at the Bird’s Nest Café on Thursday, August 18, 2011 and the small venue filled up quickly to hear the two men perform separately and together.

Both artists began studying guitar at a young age and have won national and international awards. Both continue their studies in Thailand and abroad. (Photo by Ronnakit N-kham)


A Special Trumpet Recital

By Jai-Pee

On Friday September 2nd at 7.30pm at the recently refurbished ground floor Rimping Condominium Screening Room, on the corner of Charoen Rad Road and Nakorn Ping Bridge, principal trumpeter with the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra, Lertkiat Chongjirajitra, accompanied by Dr.Pornpan Banternghansa piano will present the following recital:

Giuseppe Torelli: Trumpet Concerto in D
Robert Schumann: Widmung (arrangement)
Johann Nepomuk Hummel: Trumpet Concerto in E (2nd and 3rd movements)
Jean-Rene Desire Francaix: Sonatine
George Enescu: Legende
Alexander Goedicke: Concert Etude
George Gershwin: Three Preludes

The recital is being sponsored by Yamaha Siam Ltd who have kindly loaned the piano for the evening. Lertkiat is no stranger to Chiang Mai, having visited the city with his brass quintet just before the New Year – nor is Pornphan, making her third appearance as guest of the Friends of Music Making in Chiang Mai who have organized this event. There will be a free pre-concert lecture at 6.45pm in the Screening Room by JP entitled “Who the hell is Hummel?”

Torelli lived in Italy from 1658 until 1709 and wrote over 30 concerti for trumpets There have been many arrangements of the song by Schumann, one of the most important being a fantasy on the main theme transposed by Franz Liszt. The highlight of the recital will be the performance of two movements from the Hummel Trumpet concerto, the second movement being one of the most serene and beautiful trumpet melodies ever written. There follow several more modern works by composers from France, Romania, Russia and the USA. This promises to be a fine evening’s entertainment and what could end such a wonderful evening more appropriately than a romantic dinner in the adjoining Samsen Villa Restaurant overlooking the river Mae Ping?

Seats may be reserved by email or phone from Khun Saeng on: [email protected] phone: 089 632 3818.

The Friends of Music-Making in Chiang Mai gratefully acknowledge the support and generosity of Yamaha Siam Ltd., (Thailand) in helping to make this recital possible.


Thailand Aims To Be No. 1 in Software Piracy Reduction in Asia Pacific

Thailand aims to be number one in software piracy reduction in Asia Pacific, a spokesman for the Economic and Cyber Crime Division (ECD) announced on Thursday, August 18, 2011.

For four consecutive years now, the country has been making continued progress towards lowering software piracy rate from 80% in 2006 to 73% in 2010. The figures represent a 7-point reduction over a five-year period. Last year, its software piracy rate fell 2% from 75% in 2009. Across the years, the country’s statistics indicate a rising trend towards greater use of genuine software in Thailand.

Apart from Hong Kong, Thailand has reduced software piracy rate faster than other Asia Pacific countries. “This is not just something good to do, but it’s something we have to do for our economic survival locally and globally,” said Pol. Col. Chainarong Charoenchainao, Deputy Commander of the Economic and Cyber-Crime Division (ECD). “Thailand needs to transit from labor-intensive industries to capital-intensive or innovative industries. We want to be known as an innovation haven – not a piracy haven.”

The continued progress reflects two things, said the ECD spokesman. First, Thailand is committed to improving IP rights protection and building a fertile ground for creative innovation that includes sustainable growth for the local software industry. Second, it speaks of Thailand’s intention to improve trade ties with the US and other nations.

The global financial crisis as well as the shrinking of export markets and overseas demands mean people and nations have to help each other to get through the difficult time. To nurture local innovation and to maintain good trade relations with other nations, countries need to show their respect for IP rights in action.

“Respect for IP rights has always been important to the establishment and sustainable growth of a creative economy which Thailand sorely needs,” said Pol. Col. Chainarong. “Now that jobs are scarce and more people are forced to become entrepreneurs or innovators, it has become a survival necessity.”

IP protection benefits not only owners of copyrighted products. At an individual’s level, users of genuine software have access to technical assistance as well as protection from hackers and malware. On a national level, it keeps the economy growing and creates jobs. A study conducted by the Business Software Alliance in partnership with research firm IDC predicted that lowering PC software piracy by 10 points over four years could result in the creation of over 350,000 additional jobs in the Asia-Pacific region alone.

On the flip side, infringement of IP rights discourages innovation, kills jobs and makes countries less attractive as trade partners or investment destinations. “No one wants to trade with you or hire you if you have a long history of stealing other people’s innovations,” said the ECD spokesman.

At the very least, violation of IP rights deprives countries of international trade benefits that they would otherwise enjoy. Washington, for example, offers Generalised System of Privileges that include, among others, exemption of import taxes otherwise levied upon 4,800 products that enter the United States.

Copyright infringement inevitably comes with legal penalty. According to Copyright Act B.E. 2537, the punishment for infringement of a copyrighted computer program by selling, occupying for sale, or offering for sale, is 6 months to 4 years of imprisonment and/or a fine from 100,000 baht to 800,000 baht.

In 2010, some 210 companies were raided and found having unauthorized software worth nearly half a billion baht in total. Despite strings of successes there is a lot more to do and police investigations and raids will continue – albeit quietly. Considering the statistical progress and commitment of the ECD forces as well as greater public awareness of IP rights, he is confident Thailand will soon surpass Hong Kong with fastest piracy reduction in the region.

“Commercial and economic benefits asides, respect for IP rights speaks of our integrity as an individual and as a nation,” said Pol. Col. Chainarong. “Thailand’s got good people with talents, creativity and originality. We don’t need to steal other people’s innovations to make a living.” (ECD)


A unique take on faces at 2nd Floor Gallery

The artist, Somchai Rattanasopon begins work on a large work at the start of the exhibition held at the 2nd Floor Gallery.

By Shana Kongmun

The exhibition by Somchai Rattanasopon at 2nd Floor Gallery on Ratwithi Road opened on Thursday, August 11 where he started the show off by creating a large painting on a fabric as people entered the show. Working quickly and decisively, the shape of the head and face took form, and then finally, with the finishing touches, one could see the Court Jester take shape. It was an inside view into his style and method and one which offers understanding of the many faces on show in his exhibition.

The gallery was lined with faces, all different and yet bearing similarities here and there. Jason Tamthai, the owner of 2nd Floor Gallery and friend of the artist said, “Its faces of people he knows, friends and acquaintances.”

The faces were nothing if not evocative and I have to confess, some were rather disturbing, as a friend pointed out, “I am not sure how I would feel if someone painted me like that!” But if art is supposed to do more than merely decorate or entertain but make us think and consider then Khum Somchai has done just that.

The 2nd Floor Gallery is found at the corner of Ratwithi and Ratchapakinai Roads, upstairs on the second floor of an old wooden shophouse and is open from 6 PM.

Some of the black and white drawings on display.

More faces, in color.

Jason Tamthai, owner of 2nd Floor Gallery
and Somchai Rattanasopon in front of the finished piece.


Book enthralls at Saen Khum Terrace

Book Kitavadhana entertains guests Carol and Tony Archer during the dinner at Saen Khum Terrace on August 8, 2011.

By Shana Kongmun

When I first came to Chiang Mai I recall sitting in Sangdee Gallery and hearing the most magnificent baritone perform there and thinking, “I can’t believe such a small city has such a huge talent.”

That was when I was introduced to Chiang Mai native Book Kitavadhana. He has the Vocal Experts Studio and while his voice is magical, I am not convinced he contains enough magical properties to transform my voice into something as amazing as his or his students.

Duenpen “Boong” Chaladlam of Chiang Mai
Friends joins her friend Book after the evening.

Book held a private dinner party at Saen Khum Terrace on Monday, August 8 and although it was wet and rainy outside, the atmosphere inside was one of old friends enjoying their favorite music. Mainly show tunes, favorites were cheered and you could often hear the crowd sing along, or call out their favorites.

The modern Northern Thai meal served by the restaurant’s chef was delicious and beautifully presented and the owner and manager both came out to receive the praise due such a lovely venue and tasty food. A fusion mix of traditional Northern flavors and modern ingredients, the flavors were a good mix, as was the entire evening. Great food, great music and a wonderfully friendly atmosphere, the mix was just right and served to banish the rainy night.

German Honorary Consul Hagen Dirksen and his charming wife Wanphen Sakdatorn graciously donated several bottles of German wine as door prizes for the evening as well as gift certificates to further enjoy the venue and its modern twist on Northern Thai food.
Book hopes to present a larger concert in December as he is working on a new repertoire of Irish country songs.


Mobile Thailand at Gallery Seescape

Artist Pattrica Lipatapanlop poses with one of her pieces. (Photo by Lili Tan)

On for a month from 30 July onwards by Pattrica Lipatapanlop; traveller and storyteller. She drives around Thailand and around the world "because life is short" and sings, talks and shares stories and experiences with people; engaging them in art.

She also gets people she meets on the way to take photos of the places they are at, of themselves. The exhibition is a mobile journey of her current trip to Chiang Mai, stopping at various spots and taking photos.

The van decorated out with some
of the many items gathered during the trip. (Photo by Lili Tan)

The photos show the enthusiasm and enjoyment this project has engendered among the many participants. (Photo by Lili Tan)


HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

The Delights of a Friendship

Classical guitar performances

A Special Trumpet Recital

Thailand Aims To Be No. 1 in Software Piracy Reduction in Asia Pacific

A unique take on faces at 2nd Floor Gallery

Book enthralls at Saen Khum Terrace

Mobile Thailand at Gallery Seescape