By Amanda Lozano
SAN ANTONIO — San Antonio is a city of millions of people; however, there is a single person that literally is one in a million. Meet Betina Vega: the first San Antonian to teach braille piano music. For several months now, Betina has taught a 12-year-old blind student how to play the piano and read music.
Contrary to popular belief, it is possible for the visually impaired to read music and play an instrument just as well as a person without any disabilities. Many times, these people can play better than those who are able to read a piece of music with their eyes, because they are required to memorize their music, opposed to just glancing at a paper and deciding to practice later and never doing so.
Betina Vega has been playing piano since she was two years old. Currently, at the age of 20, Betina is torn between two paths in her life: One is law and the other is to continue her career as a braille piano music teacher. To continue her teaching career though, she must find master of braille music (classes) and further her studies. However, there aren’t very many options for her and she is trying her hardest to find what she needs.
“What I really want to do is expand my career by going to a school where there is a master’s and professional in Braille music. I have been looking all over the place. East Coast, West Coast. Right now, I’m doing great, but I need a master to go farther with what I want to do. I need someone to talk to on a personal level that can help me,” Vega said. Betina has found a couple of schools so far.
One is located in California, and the other in Connecticut. Teaching Braille piano music is a very rare study and if Betina goes through with it she will be one of the only ones in the nation to master the skill.
Her goal should work as awareness for the nation. There is a need and want for visually impaired students to read music, and there just aren’t enough people in the world to do so.
Search the internet for braille music, and notice that there aren’t very many things to see. Betina may be the voice needed to create a revelation for a master’s in braille teaching in the nation.
“I’m so glad that now I am able to teach. My teacher before me taught me, and now I am. It’s a very rewarding experience. I only started this several months ago, and it’s already gone this far. I can only imagine what I can do when I further my studies,” Vega said.