Monday, November 20, 2023

Just some guy playing Beethoven on the piano for his elephant

Mongkol is a 61-year-old former logging elephant. His captive-held life was spent hauling trees in the Thai forest. His body shape is deformed through hard labor, he lost his right eye and tusk in this brutal logging practice. Mongkol was rescued and brought to Elephants World to spend the rest of his days relaxing peacefully in freedom by the River Kwai. I discovered Mongkol is an extremely gentle, sensitive elephant who enjoys music, especially this slow movement by Beethoven which I play to him occasionally in the day and night.

VIDEO HERE  (6:26 minutes)


I'm not much into classical music, but I do find Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata soothing, especially when I'm watching Wilhelm Kempff perform it. There's just something about the way he loses himself in his music the deeper he gets into it.

VIDEO HERE  (5:45 minutes)


  1. Daughter showed me this a while back. Wonderful.

    They've done a LOT of rescues of begging elephants(owned by beggers, used to encourage giving) and temple elephants; both tend to be either half-starved, abused or both.

    In the case of the temple elephants, it's effing infuriating: if this animal is a symbol of your deity, you'd think the bastards would treat them better.

  2. I remember when I bought Moonlight on an album and it turns out that the idiots that recorded the album split Moonlight in half so one had to flip the record over to hear the rest of the music. I threw that album away after first play. I couldn't even record it to tape on my stereo.

  3. I have no doubt elephants can and do enjoy music. They are as smart as we are....smarter probably than many people.

  4. not big on elephants, but if you are into good piano listening...check out a guy by the name of Dustin O'halloran. Sat down at his grandma's piano with a DIY book at the age of 7, and taught himself to play. taught himself so well that he ended up being recruited by ALL the major conservatorys in Europe. good listening if you dig solo piano...

  5. “To play a wrong note is insignificant; to play without passion is inexcusable.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven

  6. Kempff is amazing. He leaves the planet playing.

  7. The first movement of the Moonlight Sonata sounds as though it would be quite easy to play. The combination of ledger lines, accidentals and key shifts means that it's anything but. I did master the first movement of Beethoven's first piano sonata. I felt quite good about this until I read the notes that came with the sheet music that stated that it was probably commissioned for a pianist of modest ability.

  8. Whoa, Dude. I listened to both versions. Now I'm so fucking mellow I can't even get high.

  9. For a different take, try young guitarist Tina S
    from france. Moonlight Sonota ( third movement).


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