Presently the Director of Royal Bangkok Symphony Orchestra (RBSO) Foundation and Resident Conductor of RBSO, Dr. Vanich Potavanich is also the Music Director and Conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra, Chaophraya Symphony Orchestra, and Rangsit Symphony Orchestra.
A trumpeter in his early days at Wat Suthiwararam School, Vanich took lessons and later went on to pursue his trumpet study at the Rotterdam Conservatory in the Netherlands. He went on to graduate with BMus, MMus and Doctorate degree from the Department of Music, Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts, Chulalongkorn University.
“I enjoyed playing music and sports as a kid. It was only in high school where I had the opportunity to join the band, so I decided to make music my career.”
Vanich has served as Principal Trumpet of the RBSO since 1986. He has been guest principal trumpet player with the Vlaams-Brabants Symfonisch Orkest (Belgium), and guest trumpeter with Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Kyushu Symphony Orchestra (Japan), Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, and Nusantara Symphony Orchestra (Indonesia). A much sought after teacher of Trumpet and Ensembles, Vanich has given numerous masterclasses at universities in Thailand, and also internationally in Malaysia, Beijing, Shenzhen, Indonesia, Singapore, and Hong Kong.
Since 1995, Vanich was the Guest Conductor of RBSO, and had made conducting stints with the Burapha Symphonic Band, Kasetsart University Winds Symphony, Princess Galyani Vadhana Youth Orchestra, Mahidol Winds Symphony, Thai Youth Orchestra, Musica Sinfonietta (Penang Malaysia) and the Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble (USA).
“I am such a lucky person because I have the opportunity to work with many kinds of orchestras and bands, and this means that I have to change to improve my technique because some of the musicians are professionals while others are amateurs.”
“I am glad that my background in trumpet performance has helped me to become a better conductor. I believe that to be a great conductor you must be a great musician first – you have to know how to play well before knowing how to conduct well.”
“I am also extremely thankful for my great mentor John Georgiadis, who has been a great inspiration in my career, and I would like to thank all of my teachers and colleagues for giving me various opportunities to perform and conduct!”
When it comes to repertoire selection for orchestra seasons, Vanich often works with his teams to discuss on the music for each concert.
“I actually like all eras of music, but in particularly romantic music and contemporary music. My favourite aspect of being a music director is to have my own interpretation of each music, by telling and cueing the musicians to communicate my musical ideas.”
“By choosing music that can be enjoyed by different kinds of audience, it makes every concert a unique and memorable one.”
As a conductor and music director with an illustrious career, Dr. Vanich has a few words of advice for young musicians who want to do music as a career.
“Practice, listen, read, and repeat again and again!”
“For me, I always respect my music career by doing the best as always. It is something I often tell to my colleagues, to always put in their best efforts and enjoy the music.”
A contributing editor at TBP.