MUSIC: A Different Drummer

Scotland's Evelyn Glennie is pounding out a rare and brilliant career as a percussion soloist, never mind that she is deaf

The art of music so utterly depends on the perception of sound that it seems inconceivable for one to exist without the other. One can imagine a deaf composer if, as in the case of Beethoven, he spent decades absorbed in the world of pitch and melody before silence held sway. Music, after all, is first composed in the mind's ear, and it is no great feat for professionals to be able to "hear" a musical score simply by reading it. But a deaf performer? To hit all the right notes, to play in an ensemble or in front of an...

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