Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 - My Personal Vampire Junction

So, in a couple of hours it will be 2010 here in Bangkok. There's no one in the house. The housekeeper went to the big countdown at Central World, Trisdee went to see Avatar, and Jay went out with friends.

So I'm sitting all alone reflecting on the year that's gone by. For me 2009 was a watershed; one of the best and worst years of my life.

It was the year in which I finally came to my senses and realized I can't save the universe on my own dime. It's the year in which the Bangkok Opera's administrative structure, damaged beyond fixing in 2006 but sustained more or less singlehandedly by throwing my family's money at the hermorrhage, finally crashed and burned because I ran out of fingers to stick in the dike.

But also the year in which I found people who might really rebuild it the way it was always meant to have been built, the year in which we put on two of the finest productions in our history and in which our orchestra finally broke through the international credibility barrier. It was a year of astonishing bad luck followed by amazing last-minute rescues. I think I can honestly say I've aged much more than a year this year. I certainly feel it, physically and emotionally.

This is the year that Trisdee broke through to become an genuine international conductor, and Jay started composing, and Ruaychai become a concertmaster for Mahler symphonies. Basically the year that young people whose talent I discovered and nurtured have all started showing the world what they can do.

My own creative work has stalled, though; my major compositions, the Requiem and Dan no Ura my big Japanese opera remain unfinished, my big fantasy trilogy is on hold. It's really all because the details of opera admin have been weighing everything down.

So, I got to "the vampire junction that sucks your soul away," and I hope I've turned in the right direction now. Away from the soul-sucking. My new year's resolution, if anything, is to remember to be more selfish.

I want to avoid another 2009, but I'm not quite sure how to yet ...


  1. Best to you in new year Somtow. Good luck with being more selfish. Take care of yourself first.

    Brian A

  2. Dear Somtow,

    I had a pretty challenging year as well. I had to re-locate my parents into nursing facilities in Sept., and within a couple of months, my step mother died. My marriage of 13 years ended, and I have had some amazingly destructive people attempting to mess with my work and career.

    I welcome 2010 with open arms and wish you the very best new year as well. Do take care of yourself.