We interviewed Nathawan for Prestige‘s cover profile in February, 2016. Along with excerpts from her photoshoot, here are our favourite parts of the interview.
She is in the highest echelons of a business behemoth
If you live in Thailand, chances are you consume a Boon Rawd Brewery product most days of the week – whether it is beer or drinking water, or any number of agricultural products from Boon Rawd Farm (like its juices or teas), fashion, lifestyle, restaurant, real estate or food items.
“I oversee the public relations and communications for Boon Rawd Brewery in promoting its image. I am responsible for creating Corporate Social Responsibility projects, media relations, and advertising.
“But more importantly, because we believe Their Majesties the King and the Queen of Thailand are role models for us and the Thai people, we create special campaigns that highlight the social projects of Their Majesties.”
She began with a 60-second opportunity
“When I first came to work for Boon Rawd Brewery, I was fortunate to work for Khun Santi Bhirombhakdi, our current president, and found myself being invited to sit in on meetings he had with the advertising agencies. Those meetings taught me a lot, and one day, much to my surprise, Khun Santi offered me a chance to create a 60-second television spot to commemorate the birthday of Her Majesty the Queen,” she shares.
She enjoys spreading awareness of His Majesty’s musical talents
“In order to bring greater awareness of His Majesty’s music to the younger generation, we started a music camp for youths,” she says. In collaboration with the Faculty of Music at Silpakorn University headed by Tasana Nagavajara, the camp aimed to teach talented youth from the provinces who lack opportunities for training and support in their classical string instruments.
A total of 20 young talents took part, culminating in a performance of His Majesty’s Royal compositions with the Pro Musica Ensemble at Phyathai Palace, under the baton of Privy Councillor H.E. Admiral M.L. Usni Pramoj.
“It’s amazing, you wouldn’t believe that an 11-year-old boy from Yala could advance his skills – not to play perfectly, but to play well enough to perform with the Pro Musica string quartet,” she says.
She pushes the creative envelope
To reach an even wider audience, Nathawan set about creating a commemorative film inspired by His Majesty’s royal compositions. Boon Rawd Brewery and the Singha Corporation engaged four of Thailand’s leading directors to interpret compositions by His Majesty into four short films.
“I was blessed to work with the late Khun Nida Sudasna Na Ayudhaya and Khun Burani Rachjaibun as our project directors,” she says. “After two years of making this film, it was simply magical how everything just fell into place – four films that highlight His Majesty’s royal compositions and reflecting four different stages of life; a drama of friendship and compassion, a romantic comedy with a twist of emotional bravery, an inspiring true story of sacrifice, and a comedy with heartfelt messages for kids and adults.”
The resulting film, Kitjaranipon: Music in the Heart of the People, made its debut in June of 2015.
She wants to work with the Make-a-Wish foundation
Nathawan hopes to one day also work with the Make-a-Wish foundation, where she can use her creativity to help make the dreams of less fortunate children come true.
“I feel touched by all these children, who are so ill. But when you show them something delightful they just lighten up. They still have hope – that there is always hope,” she says. “I believe in miracles.”
She is close to her family
Nathawan’s extended family and her immediately family, with husband Chatchai (nicknamed “Tong”) and nine-year-old daugher Chatt (short for Chatthawan), as well as her father, Vudha, take up the rest of her time outside of work.
Little Chatt, who likes to perform at family events, is the apparent opposite of her mother. “She is very lively and outgoing. I like to work behind the scenes, but she likes to be onstage and performing. In my childhood, I had to learn piano, ballet and all those things that most girls usually learn; but I rather preferred reading. However, I did appreciate those lessons. Chatt, on the other hand, enjoys taking many extra activities; including piano, singing, ballet, dances, to horseback riding on top of all that, and she takes it to another level,” Nathawan says.
Her husband is a source of support
“[My husband] is like a rock in my life,” she says. “I’m under a lot of pressure and constantly working against time on each project, but he is a person who always gives me another angle to look at things. He is kind-hearted and a positive type of person, and without him, I couldn’t have made it through all these years.”
Photographer: Vatcharasith Wichyanrat
Stylist: Jantima Smithavej
Makeup Artist: Worawoot Watchanucha
Hair Stylist: Wassana O-adisai
Venue: The Teepsuwan Private Residence, Khao Yai