Technology Helps Aspiring Visually Impaired Musicians

New program aids visually impaired drummer
Hannah Sparling, hsparling@newarkadvocate.com

NEWARK – Before, 13-year-old Josh Shady had to tote around binders full of large-print music.

If a song fit on one page for his classmates, Josh, who is visually impaired, would need about eight. He’d scramble to turn pages midsong, falling behind the music and his bandmates.

Now, Josh can scroll through the music with no pages at all, using a foot pedal, a touch-screen computer and specialized software called Lime Lighter for visually impaired musicians.

The program is on loan to Newark City Schools until Dec. 18, and then Josh’s family plans to buy it for him to use permanently.

Josh was born premature with low vision and cerebral palsy, a muscle-weakening disease. He has trouble seeing, but he also has trouble tracking with his eyes….

The Lime Lighter is nice because Josh just has to look at one spot, and the large-print music scrolls into place for him….

Josh is in the seventh grade at Liberty. Eventually, he wants to play in the Newark High School and Ohio State University marching bands, he said.

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