Harper helping the blind see the stars
by Franklin Clark, Reporter -- fclark@cadizrecord.com
Jun 05, 2013 | 121 121 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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David Harper is shown above composing a piece on a train in Europe.</i>
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David Harper is shown above composing a piece on a train in Europe.

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A local composer uses Braille, a system of reading for the blind community, to communicate the movements of the stars in the night sky.

“I’ve built a bridge between the stars and the blind literally transcribing the stars to musical pitches so that the blind may have an understanding of astronomy,” said David Harper. “I experimented with using Braille as a means to interpret astronomical symbols into musical pitches. So the dipper part of the Big Dipper is an F-eighth note in musical Braille. Some fun was had when Draco’s head met with Gemini, Cancer, and Leo aurally.”

Last Tuesday, Harper, who graduated from the University of Kentucky in 2007 with a bachelor’s degree in musical performance, talked to the Cadiz Lions Club at Cadiz Restaurant. He hopes the participation of the Lions Club will “lead to greater things,” as the group has services dedicated to the blind.

Harper said his inspiration for this endeavor was Angela Mosely, a blind friend he met at Murray State University, and he wanted to make music for her. He is still finishing his master’s degree in music education there.

“I started making the connection through astronomy and Braille in a composition. Basically, what I do is I look at the stars and interpret the stars as if they were Braille when I look at them,” Harper said. “

For the rest of this story, see this week's issue of The Cadiz Record or subscribe to our e-Edition by calling 270-522-6605.
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