#pianoislandfestival is finally here!
Check out all the highlights of the festival!
2nd Piano Island Festival in Reunion Island
Masterclasses, Recitals and Competition
Special Invited Guests included
- Dang Thai Son, Xin Wang, Florian Koltun, Antonio di Cristofano
As many of you know, there was a huge strike going on in France during this period. The yellow vests. Schools were closed and all the main roads were barricaded for an entire month, 3 days before the festival - there were still on-going strikes, we had to wait 2 hours just to get past a normal round-about in the city.
You will see in the photos that the situation was not under control, the police were out numbered and France was preparing to send military personnel. The entire island was under siege!
The rioters broke into my music school, they took some of my diplomas (probably burnt them), trophies from past competition, computer etc. They fortunately did not steal or damage any of the pianos. I was lucky to find my CD collection in the trash.
Made a full police report - but I'm sure they will never find the culprit (because of the French administration); they are slower than sloughs!
Anyway back to the festival
- We had very few participants so this turned out to be quite a good festival. Teachers were able to spend more time with the students, and I was able to bring them around the Island.
At the competition with Antonio di Cristofano, Wang Xin and Dang Thai Son
Martial Pons, my piano technician with my new baby. From my last posts, you would have realized I bought a new piano. I spent the summer in Paris looking for a Steinway for future festivals. So here is the new Steinway D for all my future events :)
Reunion Island, is probably one of the least visited places in the world. I'm sure many of you don't even know where it is. It's simply the most beautiful and peaceful place I'm proud to call home.
Decided to give a special treat to our maestros on a Helicopter ;)
Amazing isn't it?
Followed by Maestro Dang's long awaited Piano Recital
We had mostly good food throughout. Proven in photos!
More student recitals and masterclasses
A trip to the Vanilla farm.
Did you know?
The majority of the world's #vanilla is the V. planifolia species, more commonly known as Bourbon vanilla (after the former name of Réunion, Île Bourbon)
Until the mid-19th century, Mexico was the chief producer of vanilla. In 1819, French entrepreneurs shipped vanilla fruits to the islands of Réunion and Mauritius in hopes of producing vanilla there. After 1841, when Edmond Albius discovered how to pollinate the flowers quickly by hand, the pods began to thrive. Soon, the tropical orchids were sent from Réunion to the Comoros Islands, Seychelles, and Madagascar, along with instructions for pollinating them. By 1898, Madagascar, Réunion, and the Comoros Islands produced 200 metric tons of vanilla beans, about 80% of world production in that year.
#EdmondAlbius (1829 – 9 August 1880) was born into slavery and became an important figure in the cultivation of vanilla. At the age of 12, he invented a technique for pollinating vanilla orchids quickly and profitably. Albius' technique revolutionized the cultivation of vanilla and made it possible to profitably grow vanilla beans away from Mexico.
At the age of 12 my dear friends, and born into slavery! What are kids doing these days?
So we had lunch over at home after the plantation visit. Nice weather indeed...
Other miscellaneous photos with our students.
Finally we got Maestro to sign on my new #Steinway.
Putting the last 10 days into one post is just an impossible task. I had the biggest privilege to get to know my childhood idol and hero #Dangthaison. An amazing pianist, wonderful person full of humour and humility!
Goodbye Maestro, we will miss you!!