Thursday, August 02, 2007

Proposal For Visual Music For The Deaf

Real music delivering an emotional, spiritual experience for people with hearing disabilities that is as powerful and uplifting as the experience hearing people enjoy when they listen to aural music.

We are on the threshold of major changes in the welfare of people with hearing disabilities. Affordable communication equipment is now available to help produce significant improvements in the employment, English literacy and communication capability of people with hearing disabilities. Manufacturers will produce even better and less expensive communication equipment than the usable equipment we have now. Not only will deaf welfare undergo remarkable change, but Deaf Culture itself will undergo change.

The terrible societal problems which have plagued the deaf community for so long can now be defeated in our time. But the future will be brighter for other reasons. The spiritual and artistic needs of people with hearing disabilities will be fulfilled by truly wondrous things which can happen, as follows:

People with hearing disabilities will be able to sit back and enjoy, but really enjoy, Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony or any of the musical works of Bartok, Mahler, Verdi, Saint SaĆ«ns or any musical work, including country music, spirituals and rock! This can happen. people with hearing disabilities can see music unfolding on a screen!

It is true that some people with severe hearing disabilities can’t hear music. But who says they can’t enjoy music? Here’s what’s up ahead after the problems of employment and literacy are solved by the use of advanced communication equipment.

We have the technology to reproduce music as a new, large, fulfilling artistic visual experience for people with hearing disabilities that will be unlike anything ever done. What we have in mind is a new artform that will emerge from the marriage of engineers, scientists, musicians and artists. These people, as a team, will produce new electronic equipment that will transform the sound of a lone violin or a lone trumpet or a full orchestra in a presto movement into colorful visual imagery in motion on a large home viewing screen.

People with hearing disabilities will be able to watch a Beethoven symphony and enjoy a new artistic, emotional, and spiritual experience. We have the technology and the talent to accomplish this right now. Such equipment could be called the “Music Interpreter.”

But after a “Music Interpreter” becomes available, then what?

What’s next?

A natural result flowing from this development will be “Music Appreciation Courses” for people with hearing disabilities. Such courses will teach people with hearing disabilities to identify the relationship between the trumpet, for example, and the image produced by the instrument as it appears on screen. A music appreciation course will teach people with hearing disabilities to pick out the first violin section while a symphony is in progress, or the male voices when watching Handel’s Messiah unfold on a screen.

There’s no reason in the world why people with hearing disabilities should not have music in their lives. It’s even conceivable that up ahead we’ll see deaf composers writing music for known, established instruments and seeing it played back on a screen and hearing people enjoying music composted by a deaf person on a stereo! This will be no lava lamp on a screen.

We see a future for people with hearing disabilities vastly different from what they’ve known. They may be robbed of the ability to hear, but people with hearing disabilities are sensitive and intelligent and can grow, and there’s no reason in the world why, in our day and age that is so abundant with new available technology addressing so many problems and creativeness, they shouldn’t be given every chance, every opportunity to enjoy new experiences as much as anyone else. We’ve got the tools and the talent to accomplish these things now.

Concerning the above discussion, music-to-visual encoders may well spring up and compete with each other by offering their own versions of a Beethoven Seventh or a Brahms Second Piano Concerto or the Star-Spangled Banner! People with hearing disabilities will then have a choice of music-to-visual recordings for home viewing and they’ll learn to discriminate as to which recording of a particular composition they like best!