Reflections on Motherhood: Anne Akiko Meyers, Sarah Chang and Yuja Wang
Sunday, May 08, 2011
Anne Akiko Meyers and Sarah Chang are two of today's most in-demand violin soloists. Yuja Wang is a fast-rising piano virtuoso. For this Mother's Day, they shared their own reflections on the holiday.
Anne Akiko Meyers:
My mother played David Oistrakh's Beethoven Concerto a lot when I was a baby. She read that playing music when feeding one's baby, really helped with the brain's development and growth, not to mention, spirituality. I didn't even realize the connection until now, but my 10 month old baby completely calms down only after hearing my Beethoven Spring Sonata (1st mvt.)!! What is it about Beethoven?
My mother really has an ear for music and helped shape my musical education, as did my father. They respect the dedication, hard work and dream it takes, to make music one's "voice."
Now, being a mother and traveling concert violinist, I am amazed at how my daughter responds to music (her eyes get bigger and she really listens intently) and cannot help but think, that it is registering with her soul. I am just waiting for the day, when she turns to me and says, "Mommy, that was really out of tune!"
When I was really young, I found the way my mom would dance to pieces like Swan Lake to be really magical and evocative of incredible places and things to see and hear, and I let the music, with her dance, take me there. That power of music, with or without dance, has remained to this day.
My mom has always been the backbone of my career, an unwavering, fierce supporter. Anyone who has musical parents will understand when I say that it's a very bad idea to study music with a parent, this was why my parents sent me to The Juilliard School when I was six. For the sake of peace within the household and the overall volume level for the family, it's never a good idea to try to teach your own child an instrument!
My Mom's contribution has been an iron-like support my entire life, overflowing love and putting her children's needs above all else. She is fierce, wonderful, stubborn, protective, and, at times, impossible, but she does it all with love.
Her influence is upon me daily when it comes to music and my career. I still go to her, above everybody else, for advice, not just with concert dates and recordings/programs, but also for issues concerning my team, managers, agents, business affairs, assistants, etc. I trust nobody else as much as I trust my Mom.
I would not be where I am today, the woman that I am, the musician that I am, without the unconditional love and support of my Mom.
Happy Mother's Day, everyone!