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Blind woman develops technique to read musical scores

Shared by Ana Duarte on 2017-05-16 11:03

About the solution

The Tactile Stave Notation consists of a sheet music built using 3D printing, and helps the readers by slightly elevating the staff and notes printed on it, allowing both visually impaired musicians and sighted people to read the same musical score. This is an alternative to Braille musical notation, because one doesn’t have to know Braille to be able to read the sheet.

"When we rehearsed they talk about, 'Oh there's some hairpin here.' What's a hairpin? A hairpin on my head not score. I didn't know what that is. I don't have hairpin. And they explained it to me. It was shameful for me," she explained.

The pianist started to lose her sight when she was a little kid, and became blind when she was 13 years old. Two years later she got serious about playing the piano. Yeaji went to USA in 2007, having then enrolled at UW-Madison School of Music.

The woman built this system while working on her doctorate UW-Madison School of Music. Kim created different prototypes: One was made out of plastic, another using a 3D printing pen. The she started to research about how to put it on paper, and tried to raise money to produce it.

Adapted from: http://bit.ly/1gVOeNw

This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

DISCLAIMER: This story was written by someone who is not the author of the solution, therefore please be advised that, although it was written with the utmost respect for the innovation and the innovator, there can be some incorrect statements. If you find any errors please contact the patient Innovation team via info@patient-innovation.com

About the author

Yeaji Kim, born in South Korea, in 1981, is a blind pianist who invented Tactile Stave Notation, a 3D printing system to help visually impaired people to read 3D printed scores, as an alternative to Braille musical notation. Yeaji designed this system so that anyone, visually impaired or not, can use it. She also developed this solution because the Braille scores are highly complex and yet can still lack some information traditionally included on sheet music. 

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