Synaesthesia Discovery

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Imagery and Pitch Perfect


imageSkye was sitting in his piano teacher’s music room again this evening, after a five-month break. Since December last year, he has not had much opportunity to receive private lessons. Recognising his musical talent and potential, we sent him back to his previous teacher to continue his piano learning.

Skye played a few self learnt pieces at the beginning of this evening’s lesson. Last December, he composed his very first piano piece of music called “Haunted Valley”. He played it this evening as well. The teacher was thrilled.

Thomas sat quietly on a bean bag close to me. His usual cheekiness was replaced by his admiration while listening his brother play. My husband always says Skye plays music with his soul.

Last Christmas, my parents bought Skye a proper piano as his Christmas present. The piano came with 100 pre-recorded classical pieces. Skye has been listening to them, and re-creating them by self learning.

For each piece of music, he can see projected images in front of him, perfectly clear. Sonate 1st Movement starts with an image of a vase, the same vase found at his grandparents’ house. The vase is full of water. Fresh tulips grow slowly inside the vase. As the music continues, water starts dripping out of the vase. Then it comes the rain as the song gets louder, the heavenliness of water is greatly increasing.

Many music pieces bring out 3D+ images. A 5D image floats around Le Coucou. In Skye’s mind, no one has ever discovered this type of 5D images before which makes the music unique.

He sees a huge solid ball with many different colours, characters and features inside while No. 26 [Étude de Mecanisme Op. 849] is on. There is an indescribable level of complexity in the ball.

Berceuse [Dolly] gives him a very mystic pattern with the wooden texture. The pattern looks like a blurry cat. Skye feels that he is at home doing many different things.

One of my favourite piano pieces, Sicilienne, is also one of Skye’s favourites. The imagery is interesting. He sees a photo of a child prodigy doing amazing science work which many professors can’t do. The prodigy looks like the character in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid. He starts pouring ink inside an experimental glass and mixing with different colours (similar to what’s shown in the attached image). He tries to discovery a new disease. At the far right towards the bottom, the image shows a few adults looking very confused at what the child prodigy is trying to do.

Skye took up another instrument, Clarinet, as part of his school’s music program. He is in the same group with five other children learning how to play clarinet. His teacher was quick to identify that Skye had perfect pitch. He was telling other children and the teacher what note each one of them was playing, sometimes the teacher did not even know herself.

“Oh Skye, you have perfect pitch!” The teacher was impressed.

Since that moment, Skye’s life became a bit easier with his peers. He discovered that having perfect pitch could sometimes “buy” friendship.

“Skye, which note is this one?”
“It is a C.”
“What about this one?”
“It is a High A.”

At the end of term school concert three weeks ago, Skye went on the stage and played L’arabesque on piano in front of the whole school.

“You what?” I was shocked at learning this.
“Yes, I played L’arabesque at the school concert. Everyone thought I was great! One Year 8 kid stopped me on the way out, ‘hey dude, how long have you been playing piano?’ I told him about 15 months. He said I was so cool!”

Oh dear, that is called confidence.

“But you have never learnt it!”
“That’s not true Mum! I have listened many times, and figured out how to play it.”

Skye marched to his piano, and sat down. Next few minutes, I was in total silence. Once he finished playing, I was more silent.

I used to complain to my husband, who has perfect pitch like his son, it was too unfair that he could just listen to a song, and play it on his guitar without reading notes. This time, my husband was watching his son in envy.

“Now I know what the unfairness means.” He smiled.

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