“Play Your Life with All You Have”

June 3, 2013

Ji-Hae Park, Violinist

One never knows when inspiration is going to hit or what form it will take. Inspiration could come from a mountaintop view, a well-written book, an unexpected conversation with a stranger, or an uplifting movie to name just a few sources. It could also come from music, as in Ji-Hae Park’s case.

Ji-Hae Park‘s goal was to become the best violin player in the world. In pursuit of prestigious concert-hall dreams she developed some of the most exceptional skills in the world of classical music. But while she was on the fast track to achieving violin stardom, her dream burst like a balloon. Consumed with the thought that her goal was one-dimensional, Park wondered if there was anything more fulfilling that music could ever give her. As a result, she fell into the depths of a severe depression, and just as she was “about to give everything up,” she discovered that the only thing that could reach her in that dark state–and indeed, restore her soul–was music. Certain musical pieces seemed to understand her pain and sense of isolation more than anyone in her life, and in doing so, these pieces gave her great comfort. Reinvigorated by the sheer emotion and poetry of the music, Park began to consider a new and deeper approach to her career as well as her life in general.

Park desired to share her musical talent with those who might be in the depths of despair hoping to comfort them in their loneliness. That is, she poured her heart out on the violin to audiences at hospitals, prisons, charities, and even among those suffering from leprosy. By doing this, she found the meaning in her life that she had hoped for all along. Now Park continues in this newfound approach–and indeed plays grand concert halls as well.

As artists, actors are in a position to seek what inspires them, to dig deeper, and revitalize their work and sense of purpose. Park puts it this way:

“I think, while I’m enjoying my life as a happy musician, I’m earning a lot more recognition than I’ve ever imagined. But it’s now your turn. Changing your perspectives will not only transform you but also the whole world. Just play your life with all you have, and share it with the world. I really look forward to witnessing a transforming world by you…”

So, here’s to you aspiring actors to find what inspires you, and to project all you’ve got out to the world–which will, in turn, certainly inspire many others. Please share with us your source of inspiration for your acting dreams.

To hear Ji-Hae Park’s “jaw-dropping” violin playing on her Ted Talk, click here.