Laskine at three
My parents were marvellous "
father was a fervent music lover. She would say that he
was obsessed with it, in ecstasy when listening to some
pieces. Her mother Dora, an admirable pianist, was above
all a woman of character with a strong will. She gave up
the piano to devote her time to what counted most, in her
view: her children, especially Lily.
" Vocations? Rubbish! You need good fingers and
a sacrificed childhood. "
Lily was first introduced to the
piano, but showed no particular enthusiasm. Her mother suggested
another instrument, during a family party: Lily herself
described her feelings at this first experiment with the
harp asbeing of "amused indifference". But her
mother said "the harp is the music of the angels",
and so she became a harpist. A lively, joyful child, she
had to practise her instrument 6 hours a day, although her
one wish was to go to school with other children. She would
have paid dearly to escape from this solitude, she who so
much enjoyed the company of the other children. But her
mother encouraged, pushed, stimulated her. Ever curious,
she would do her scales and preparation exercises while
secretly reading books by Hugo, Dumas and Zola hidden behind
the music stand.