JAVS Fall 2023

In Review:

The 48th International Viola Congress by Daphne Gerling with contributing students from the University of Tennessee and University of North Texas

… I enjoyed the wide representation of music from different cultures. I particularly remember the use of traditional Chinese instruments, Brazilian techniques, Korean folk music, and so much more. Watching professional violists perform music from their countries expanded my knowledge and inspired me to explore music that I may have never heard before. Of course, the traditional Thai music that surrounded the whole trip was extraordinary and new to me, and I hope to incorporate some of that music in my future career as a violist. -Emily Wankerl, University of Tennessee student attendee From June 6-10, 2023, the epicenter of the viola world shifted to Salaya, Thailand, where the 48th International Viola Congress took place at the Mahidol University College of Music. An epic musical, international, and inter-cultural gathering, it brought together over 100 violists from all over the globe to revel and immerse themselves in five days of viola expertise, artistry, camaraderie and friendship.

As our Congress host Danny Keasler so aptly put it, we all “spent weeks preparing musically, days planning [our] trips, and hours and hours and hours on planes to travel to Southeast Asia.” And it was utterly worth it, to be part of the very first International Viola Congress held in Asia, and the first held after the Covid-19 pandemic travel restrictions eased. Two things were particularly noticeable about this Congress: the inter-cultural emphasis on bringing to light as much music from around the world as we could possibly fit into approximately 70 sessions over 5 days, and the fact that the violists represented approximately 26 different countries. I was able to attend just about 32 sessions, and each day I wished I could have heard at least one more colleague’s amazing performance or presentation! 1

We also relished the opportunity to explore the wonderful culture of our host country. Several of us arrived on Queen’s Day, one of Thailand’s most important national holidays, and beautiful gold and purple decorations in Daphne Gerling and Donald Maurice take a Thai Cooking class, photo courtesy of Daphne Gerling.

Golden Buddha in Salaya, photo courtesy of Daphne Gerling.

Journal of the American Viola Society / Vol. 39, No. 2, Fall 2023


Made with FlippingBook Digital Publishing Software