Matthew Whitaker is a piano virtuoso. He started playing his first notes at the age of 3 without having taken any lessons. The most astonishing thing in his history is that he is blind. At birth, doctors diagnosed her with retinopathy of prematurity which resulted in blindness.
However, his handicap did not prevent him from becoming a pianist . Now 18 years old, Matthew continues to make a living from his passion in Hackensack, New Jersey (United States). His talent is such that he caught the attention of Dr Charles Limb. The latter is fascinated by Matthew's ability to play the piano despite his blindness.
He therefore suggested that she take part in a study that allowed her to better understand how her brain works.
Meet a piano prodigy
Moses Whitaker, the father of the young prodigy, told the site's microphone 60 Minutes that it is an ability he developed at a very young age. According to him, Matthew started playing on a Yamaha keyboard that his grandfather gave him when he was 3 years old.
Although he had never taken a lesson, he began to play the children's song "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" with both hands.
“Matt was playing the chords and the melody of the song at the same time. He hadn't taken any lessons at the time. And he was three years old. So my question was, "Ok, who showed him how to do this?" Someone must have shown him how to play this song. "But no one showed it to him," his father said.
Matthew Whitaker's brain reveals its secrets
At the age of 9, he learned to play Hammond B3 on his own. Two years later, he went on to concerts in famous clubs and halls. In the spring of 2020, he participated in the New Orleans Jazz Festival.
Dr. Charles Limb recently asked Matthew to follow him to the University of California, San Francisco, for an MRI. The latter was to play the piano while he passed a scanner. He was also subjected to several tests which consisted of making him listen to music and lessons.
The results showed that his visual cortex did not undergo any changes when he listened to lessons. However, he was busy listening to a song. Dr Charles Limb said that when not stimulated by sight, his visual cortex used certain tissues to "see music." "