Proud Parents . . . Elated Daughter


My life has always been my music, it’s always come first, but the music ain’t worth nothing if you can’t lay it on the public. The main thing is to live for that audience, ’cause what you’re there for is to please the people.—Louis Armstrong

December is pretty hectic for Mom and Dad, but particularly for Mom.  Our 13-year-old daughter is a budding violinist and the normal months are filled with driving back and forth to music lessons twice a week, Royal College of Music all day on Saturday, and helping organise school issues around practice time. But December takes it up another notch.  December seems to be solo concert time.

This December, Stephanie had three solo concerts within a very short time span and with all the preparation, hours of practice late into the night, neighbours banging on the walls at 11pm, occasional screaming matches when things weren’t going well, for both daughter and mother (Dad hid out in his office), the tsunami of stress was building up to a crescendo.

It was either going to wreak havoc or carry her to new heights.  Not much in between.

I guess all parents want their children to be better than they were, on all fronts it seems.  Better at school, better confidence, better judgement, better looking, better grades, . . .  The hard part of parenting is knowing when to push for their sake, and not for yours.  The questions flew back and forth between Mom and Dad in the run up to December.  “Are we doing the right thing?  Should be back off or slow down the pace? Is this really right for her?  What about school grades?”  

I don’t know any parents who get it 100% right.  The hidden perils of parenting.

“Tomorrow’s victory is today’s practice.” ― Chris Bradford, The Way of the Warrior

But, all the practice, tears and tantrums paid off.  Her three solo performances were stunning, and the last one, at the National Youth Music Theatre Christmas Concert in St. Paul’s church in Covent Garden was spectacular.  She played a shortened version of Pablo Sarasate’s Carmen Fantasy to a standing ovation.  Dad let out a sigh of relief, Mom was beaming.

SEC JudeAnd to top it all off, the Patron of the NYMT is the actor, Jude Law, who spent time congratulating her after the concert.  She is still in a daze and can’t really remember what he said to her.  In the car on the way home all she could say was: “The most amazing day of my life!”

If you have an interest, take a look at the YouTube clip of her performance:

Tight Lines . . .

John R Childress

About johnrchildress

John Childress is a pioneer in the field of strategy execution, culture change, executive leadership and organization effectiveness, author of several books and numerous articles on leadership, an effective public speaker and workshop facilitator for Boards and senior executive teams. In 1978 John co-founded The Senn-Delaney Leadership Consulting Group, the first international consulting firm to focus exclusively on culture change, leadership development and senior team alignment. Between 1978 and 2000 he served as its President and CEO and guided the international expansion of the company. His work with senior leadership teams has included companies in crisis (GPU Nuclear – owner of the Three Mile Island Nuclear Plants following the accident), deregulated industries (natural gas pipelines, telecommunications and the breakup of The Bell Telephone Companies), mergers and acquisitions and classic business turnaround scenarios with global organizations from the Fortune 500 and FTSE 250 ranks. He has designed and conducted consulting engagements in the US, UK, Europe, Middle East, Africa, China and Asia. Currently John is an independent advisor to CEO’s, Boards, management teams and organisations on strategy execution, corporate culture, leadership team effectiveness, business performance and executive development. John was born in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and eventually moved to Carmel Highlands, California during most of his business career. John is a Phi Beta Kappa scholar with a BA degree (Magna cum Laude) from the University of California, a Masters Degree from Harvard University and was a PhD candidate at the University of Hawaii before deciding on a career as a business entrepreneur in the mid-70s. In 1968-69 he attended the American University of Beirut and it was there that his interest in cultures, leadership and group dynamics began to take shape. John Childress resides in London and the south of France with his family and is an avid flyfisherman, with recent trips to Alaska, the Amazon River, Tierra del Fuego, and Kamchatka in the far east of Russia. He is a trustee for Young Virtuosi, a foundation to support talented young musicians. You can reach John at or
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6 Responses to Proud Parents . . . Elated Daughter

  1. Frank Tempesta says:

    Wow!……your parental pride, deservedly, brightly beams through this blog. I can imagine Christiane floating on a cloud. Please pass along our congratulations to Stephanie.

    Best, Frank

    Sent from my iPad


  2. Sandy says:

    My thoughts exactly, as well — Wow! Stephanie and her violin make absolutely beautiful music together. Congratulations to all of you — her dedication and love of the music and the support you and your wife give to her. Wonderful.


  3. Music is my first love, and it will be my last …


  4. Congratulations to you and your daughter. You must be so proud, and rightfully so.


  5. Jack Bantoft says:

    I have just seen and heard your wonderfully talented daughter at the King’s Lynn Music Society. Everyone I spoke to afterwards was absolutely enchanted by her exceptional performance – and Stephanie was as articulate between the pieces as during them. We shall no doubt see and hear much more of her over the coming years.


  6. Mary Elizabeth RUDD says:

    Absolutely wonderful to hear and see Stephanie at Glasgow tonight on the last night of the Proms, fills my heart every time I have the privilege of seeing and hearing this beautiful and talented young lady I have known from birth. Thank you Christiane and John. Elizabeth XXX


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