After hitting his head in the shallow end of a swimming pool, a man awoke with the condition known as acquired musical savant syndrome. He had become a great pianist without ever learning to play.
Derek Amato Becomes Musical Genius after Brain Injury.
Hoax or Fact:
According to the story doing rounds on social media sites, a man named Derek Amato became a Musical Genius after suffering a head injury in a swimming pool. It is said that he woke up with a condition called acquired musical savant syndrome to become a Great Pianist without any prior knowledge of playing it. Although it sounds strange and unbelievable, the claims about Derek Amato and the acquired musical savant syndrome are indeed facts.
About the Accident and Aftermath
In October 2006, Colorado man Derek Amato suffered a major concussion (brain injury) after diving into the shallow end of a swimming pool while he was having fun with friends. Due to the head injury, Derek Amato lost 35 percent of his hearing, some of his memory that day, and continues to deal with headaches, but he gained something remarkable - he became a musical genius because of what doctors called “acquired savant syndrome,” a rare condition. Few days after the accident, while visiting a friend, Derek felt inexplicably drawn to a keyboard and he started to play original music, beautiful and fully structured. Although Derek had never composed music before the incident, the music flowed effortlessly from his hands. The amazing experience in his own words, "My fingers began to scale the piano keys as if I had played all of my life. I can't explain the feeling of awe that overcame my entire being, although I can tell you the expression on my friend's face was enough to put us both in tears."
Shown in the first video is an August 2013 TED Talk, where Derek Amato explained his amazing story of becoming a musical savant. The second video shows Derek's interview with Steve Harvey on Good News, where you can also see his beautiful musical performance with Mandy Harvey, a vocalist who tragically lost her hearing, but still performs using a visual tuner and vibrations to stay on key.
It is interesting to note that Derek Amato is one of just a few dozen known "accidental geniuses" or "sudden savants," i.e. people who survive severe head injuries and exhibit special gifts for music, math or art. The causes, mechanisms and processes that lead to these exceptional abilities are still under research. After his accident and miraculous transformation into a pianist, Derek Amato left the corporate world in order to pursue a musical career.