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81 by Brooks Preik photography by Allison Potter rach on Domonique Launey Enchanted by the music of Mozart at the tender age of two, Domonique Launey seemed destined to become a concert  pianist. Her mother, an amateur classical pianist, and her father, a trumpet and cornet player, instilled in their children a love for the music of master composers, and also an appreciation for the rich musical heritage of the Louisiana Cajun country where they grew up. Launey completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees at the University of Texas-Austin, where she studied piano. There she took master classes with some of the foremost classical musicians and teachers of the day. She completed her postgraduate work in Belgium as a Rotary International Scholar. She has performed throughout the US, Europe and Jamaica as a soloist, chamber musician and accompanist, garnering many impressive awards in her career including first place in the Wideman International Piano Competition and the Gold Medallion for her solo performance at Académie de Musique in Belgium. She and her husband Dr. Jonathan Hines — also an accomplished musician as well as a physician — moved to Wilmington in 1996. Since that time, Launey has been a central figure on the concert scene in her adopted community, performing regularly for the Music at First series at First Presbyterian Church, in numerous chamber music recitals and as a soloist with the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra. You and your husband have family in Louisiana and Texas. What made you choose Wilmington as your home? Jon is an internal medicine specialist and he was recruited to this area. He loves the ocean. I love the mountains, and I knew the mountains were not that far away. Of course, I love the ocean too. Who wouldn’t ? Has your musical career been favorably affected by moving to this area? Yes, tremendously. I was so welcomed by the musical com-munity here. I met Doug Lightenheimer, the organist/music director at First Presbyterian Church. He told me about the concerts they were starting there and invited me. I was so lucky to have that lovely venue and that beautiful piano, a 7-foot Shigeru Kawai. Steven Errante heard me play and invited me to play a Mozart Concerto with the Wilmington Symphony. Then I met others. I was amazed at all of the concentrated talent here.  You teach in addition to performing. How has your involvement with the Cape Fear Music Teachers Association influenced you?  Membership is open to everyone, though mostly piano teachers. I was used to being in a huge association, but this one is a small, wonderful group of serious piano teachers who are totally devoted to their work. That devotion, to me, has always been inspirational. Who is your favorite composer from the past? Mozart. When I was a child I could walk around and sing all of the themes. It intrigued me that he could think of so many. He had endless ideas. If you could spend an evening with any musical celebrity living or dead, who would you choose? Leonard Bernstein — hands down. One of the most creative people ever. And such exuberance. What contemporary classical pianist is your favorite? Emanuel Ax because he always stays true to the style and score of the composer. Though you are blessed with an incredible talent as a pianist, is there another that you wish for? I always dreamed I would wake up one morning with a gor-geous voice. If you could travel, all expenses paid, to any city in the world, where would you go? Why? First, Baton Rouge to see my amazing mother, then Vienna would be great to re-experience the opera, the Vienna Philharmonic, museums and striking architecture. www.wrightsvillebeachmagazine.com WBM Q&A


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