Dot Teaches Hearing Impaired Student to Sing!
When this young man called me, and asked if I would work with someone who was hearing impaired, I thought "Well, why not?" If what I knew was true about pitch issues, and, like Arthur Joseph taught me, "singing has more to do with the brain and muscle memory than hearing," and "less than 2% of the population is 'tone deaf'," then why can't I teach this guy to sing?
So, we set forth on an amazing vocal journey. This young man who loved to sing, but had to use a hearing aid and read lips to get by in the dance industry came to me with a whole new set of challenges most people would never imagine. If I played a note on the piano or sang a pitch, he thought he had no idea what the note was, no concept of where it was or how to reproduce it!
Ben was one of my best teachers. He was consistent, determined and hard working. He even got an acting agent while he was studying with me and landed a national commercial played during American Idol! He wasn't going to let anyone tell him that just because he couldn't hear, he couldn't sing. Like everyone, he loved how singing made him feel. But you can imagine how scary it would be to sing and think, "Okay, I already have hearing issues. What if I sound horrible? How will I ever really know?"On top of that, I eventually discovered that we had to take out his hearing aids, (which I didn't even think he had at first) because the frequencies were interfering with the correct notes. Ben had to learn first to TRUST that he could do it. KNOW how it felt when it was open and free and LOVE his voice. He had to believe in himself, and that didn't happen overnight.
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