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Since I moved to Boston, I have felt as though I have two musical worlds. One is my community at Berklee; the other are my very close friends in Chiang Mai, whom I spent many years learning from and playing with before returning to the States. Both groups have had a huge impact on my life, although they are different in many ways, both musically and in terms of the ins and outs of their daily lives. My idea for a culminating experience project is to connect these two worlds. For some time now, my community at the North Gate Jazz Co-Operative has been trying to start a non-profit music school for various disadvantaged youth in Chiang Mai: orphans, drug addicts, etc. I would like to raise funding for a combination social project / debut album, where I would channel a sizeable donation to assist in the building and creation of this school; lead a group of BGJI masters students to Chiang Mai to develop and launch the program; and record an album featuring both BGJI students and prominent Thai musicians I had previously collaborated with while living there.
I know this would present significant challenges, particularly around other BGJI coursework. But when I imagine what would truly be a culminating experience for the past six years of my life, this is it. I am very excited to discuss this idea with you further, and explore ways to make it a reality.