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Budapest Orchestra helps people who are deaf ‘hear’ Beethoven through touch

Zsuzsanna Foldi has been deaf all her life. Still, with her hands placed on the double bass, sitting among musicians in Budapest’s Danubia orchestra, she can enjoy and literally feel Beethoven’s famous Fifth Symphony, reports Reuters.

“When I sat next to the musician who played the bass today, I started crying,” she said.

“My father also had a double bass… and I did not have a hearing aid. I always put my ear on the bass and he played to me,” she added, recalling her childhood.

Foldi lost her hearing when she was eight months old due to a meningitis infection. At the age of three she was declared deaf.

Now 67, she is part of a group of people, including children, all of them hard of hearing, that has been able to “hear” through touch Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, which has gone down in music history as the Symphony of Fate.

Some of the audience sit next to the musicians and place their hands on the instruments to feel the vibration. Others hold balloons that convey the vibration of the sounds. Some are given hyper-sensitive hearing aids.

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