Making Music with His Heart: Getting Back Up from Where He Fell…the Visually-Impaired Pianist Told of His Journeys

From the Front Page Sections, translated…

Of all the certified street performers, there are more than ninety groups who are handicapped, they were able to break through the boundaries of their bodies, and show off their specialized talents, their stories are very moving.

Of the individuals, one was Hsu, who is thirty years of age right now, back when he was just three years old, he’d played out a tune that his grandfather hummed to him often with his toy piano, and ever since, his families put him through piano lessons, he’d won numerous awards, and was names as a “Prodigy of Music”.

At ten, he earned the sponsorship of a local group that allowed him to head to Austria to learn music, but, not knowing any German, or the Braille sheet music, it’d caused him to get eliminated in the worldwide Chopin Piano Competitions, after he couldn’t pass his exams in playing, he’d not gotten a diploma, and came back to Taiwan disappointed. His friends encouraged him to become a certified street performer, and because he’d played a combination of classical and popular music, he’d gained the accolades of his listeners, this helped him regain his lost confidence again.

全盲鋼琴手許哲誠,分享他曾經受挫又站起的生命歷程。 記者祁容玉/攝影photo coutesy of…

“Blind students have more options than becoming a massage therapist”, Chen was originally a middle school music teacher, after she’d transferred to the special eds school to teach music, she’d found, that music got the children with handicaps to open themselves up more, and she’d started teaching her students to play the piano; in recent years, she’d added more instruments like the jazz drums and the clay flute too, to help the students with physical handicaps to earn their certificates for street performers, to allow them to have more than one option to make a living, it’s just, that music training isn’t listed as a formal form of occupational training, there are still, many restrictions.

Hsu told, that handicapped people are like normal people, they’d felt the affirmation in achieving their own goals, and find their own dreams too; but, they would also feel, defeated from time to time too, hoped that the outside won’t believe, that “the handicapped can only ‘glow’ like the saints would”; so long as everybody uses a “normal eye” to look upon the handicapped individuals, it’s the most encouragement we can give to them.

So, despite his handicaps, he’d still made his life count, he’d not gotten beaten, by the fact that he is visually impaired, and, I’m certain, that his path to learning music was nothing easy, and, despite how he didn’t pass the test to enter into the acclaimed music academy overseas, he’d still made his own life count here, by performing on the streets, entertaining people who pass him by from a day to day basis.


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