Published : Wednesday, September 27, 2017 | 12:48 PM
The family boasts a pair of award-winning pianists: Nat Yontararak and his son, Pana. The elder Yontararak is also a composer, one of whose works was presented at the United Nations in 1995 to commemorate the General Assembly’s fiftieth session. But Nat has been known primarily as a performer ever since he won first prize in the Siam Music Festival in 1971, when he was only sixteen. He has toured Europe as well as the United States, often performing in order to raise money for his favorite causes, including elephant conservation and bone-marrow transplants.
Nat promotes classical music in his native country by running his own music school, staffed in part by his family. Thailand’s classical music scene is also enriched by the Sala Sudasiri Sobha concert hall, which he designed and built—Nat holds a bachelor’s degree in architecture—and which hosts performances by the country’s finest young musicians.
As for Nat Yontararak’s son, Pana, his prizes include a second in the Concours de Piano de Chatou, in France, and a third in the Riviera della Versilia Piano Competition, in Italy. He achieved a significant breakthrough by becoming the first pianist from his country to be accepted by and to graduate from the prestigious Francesco Morlacchi Conservatory, in Perugia. Having inherited his father’s philanthropic impulses, Pana has toured the United States annually for many years to raise funds to combat blood diseases.
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