Sunday, 22 September 2013

Happy finality

I was having a quiet dinner with Dennis. Two days later I was to have the first rehearsal with Isabelle and Vanessa for the launch of my mother's book. 
"You know there's no piano at the gallery anymore, don't you?" Dennis said between two bites of the Filipino style chicken he had cooked.
I nearly choked. "No piano?" 
"The jazz band took it back, in May, I think."
"Is there the slimmest chance that it may have come back to the gallery....?" I knew the question needed no answer. There was only two solutions: whether I would have to bring my mother's digital piano, or I would have to come up with new music and play it from the laptop - but what laptop?
After a talk with Vanessa, it became clear that I would have to opt for the second solution. Vanessa didn't think she would manage to do her  improvisation on a digital piano: she wanted to play with the strings, with the wooden structure and make sounds out of it. How relieved she was when I told her I would take care of the music myself. And the mere thought of having to find a car and bring the piano all the way to the gallery on a Sunday afternoon in Paris was enough to discourage me. And I was supposed to sit back and enjoy the event...
My brother provided the laptop. After two rehearsals and two evenings spent working on the music we were fine ready. I didn't need to worry about the performance. Isabelle being a pro, she captivated the thirty children and the parents who accompanied them.
"The doors were not yet open, and a woman came and said to me", Isabelle told me after the show. "She said: I have ten boys with me, around 10 year old, high on testoterone and addicted to Wii!!! When can we get in? I thought to myself: Isabelle you have to rise to the challenge!"
And it was a success. Adults and children alike were all enchanted. The children, including the ten hyperactive boys, were attentive and taken by the stories. Praises went to Isabelle, of course, but also to my mother's writing. As a result, many copies of the book were sold afterward.
My mother was elated and so happy to witness the fruit of her labour. She may claim that she doesn't care, but I know she had now good reasons to be proud of herself.
Vanessa came with a friend of hers - also a pianist, and both agreed to bring the project to the next level. "A reading with two pianos, perhaps?". Whatever it is, I think I will organise something for Christmas or/and Chinese New Year!
We celebrated with a dinner at a nearby restaurant.
My nephew Vu An enchanted everyone with his newly improved vocabulary. Only a few months ago he could barely say more than 'Papa' or 'Mama'...

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