Photo taken in:Targu MuresYear when photo was taken:1927Country name at time of photo:RomaniaCountry name today:Romania
This is a picture of me and class mates, taken in the yard of the French Institute L?arche in Marosvasarhely in 1927. I?m second from right, I don?t remember who the girl standing next to me was. First from left is the sister of Mihaly Spielman's mother, called Juci, too, Juci Sebestyen. She was Jewish. First from right is Kati Kertesz, she wasn?t from Marosvasarhely, she was a boarder. She wasn?t Jewish.
My parents had an acquaintance who attended the French Institute, called L'arché, and my parents insisted on enrolling me there. Initially I cried a lot because I didn't want to go there, since my girlfriends were studying at Unirea school, but eventually I came to love the institute as well. We had a teacher called Mademoiselle Breton. I don't recall the other teacher's name. We learned everything in French, except for the German language. I think there were three Romanian students, children of merchants, the others were mostly Hungarian and Jewish. Towards the end of the 2nd year, the French consul from Bucharest paid us a visit and awarded two medals, one to me.
In the meantime, from the age of eight, I also took piano lessons at the Music Academy. I wanted to dedicate my life to playing the piano, because I was talented, but my fingers were too short. I practiced twice as much as the others. It should have taken 14 years to complete the Music Academy , but I did it in 12 years. Between the seventh and eighth year my teacher told me, 'Juci, you'll have to spend a year stretching your fingers.' Then, around 1935-1938, I gave piano lessons, and I had two or three students. Dad wouldn't let me have more, he only wanted me to learn how hard it is to earn money.