Born Blind and Autistic with Slim Chance at Survival, He Proves Everyone Wrong and Becomes Musical Savant

One baby with a slim chance to live becomes one of the most talented musical geniuses in history.

Derek Paravincini and his sister were born three and a half months early, weighing only 1 lb. each. Sadly, his twin sister hadn’t received enough oxygen and was stillborn. In a similar fate, Derek wasn’t expected to live through the night. Miraculously, the young newborn became the first child born at Royal Berkshire Hospital to survive such a premature birth.


Derek was born blind and severely autistic. However, he held a musical ability that would make worlds history. His parents first realized their son had a special talent after hearing a story from their older daughter. After arriving home, she explained Derek had just played a hymn the family heard in church that morning on a toy keyboard. He was 3-years-old at the time.

Blind pianist , Derek Paravicini , playing with the Emerald Ensemble at the St George's concert hall , Bristol.

Blind pianist , Derek Paravicini , playing with the Emerald Ensemble at the St George’s concert hall , Bristol.

Although he can’t tell you his age or his right hand from his left, he has the rare gift of absolute pitch. Derek can detect the exact tone of every note in a single chord. Most professional musicians claim to be able to identify 5 out of 10 notes. With this ability, the musical savant can master and repeat melodies he’s heard just once.


Now 30-years-old, the musical genius is labeled the “human jukebox.” He regularly travels around the world showcasing his ability. The young man has hosted many infamous TEDx Talks and created a unique type of concert. Asking audience members to name a song, the key it should be played in, and the style of music it should replicate, Derek creates new compositions on the spot.

He has an intricate understanding of thousands of tunes and an impressive range of music. When one audience member shouts out “Ain’t No Sunshine” in B major done in ragtime, Derek wastes no time. His fingers fly about they keys creating a new piece of music without any hesitation.

His father and sister believe Derek is living the life he was meant to. They describe his performances as “doing what he was born to do.”

See Derek’s truly extraordinary abilities in real life in the clip below.

Source: Daily Mail