Home>Service> Awardees of Fervent Global Love of Lives Award> 14th Fervent Global Love of Lives Award 2011> Talented Child with Multiple Disabilites -- Chang Yen-Cheng
Blind Music Talent with Brain Paralysis Lives Magnificently with Hands and Ears
      Being one of the twins, Yen-Cheng was born premature infected by bacteria that caused septicemia and pathological changes of retina; after several surgeries, he was blind and brain paralysis. When he was 3, he received a present --- an electronic piano that opened his eyes to the road of music. In addition to the fact that he was born with music talent and hardworking nature, his persistence that he never gives up along with parents, siblings, teacher and friends' support and encouragement have made him stand out in various music contests among many competitors. For two consecutive years, he won the first place in National Handicapped Music Contest Piano Group (2006 and 2007) and the first place in National Handicapped Music Contest Piano and Violin Group (2007). In 2008, he won the first place in Taipei Blind Cultural Foundation Piano Contest and outstanding performance in International Taipei Chopin Contest special award. Moreover, he held many concerts and was invited to Italy for a group performance with musicians Maddalena Muraric and Richard Rittelmann.
Startling and Sad News
      Born in 1994, Chang Yen-Cheng was a very little baby weighing less than normal. When his mother, Chen Li-hua, was happy to give birth to a pair of twins, the twin brother Yen Cheng had bacterial infection that caused brain paralysis, septicemia and pathological changes of retina; six surgeries on eyes failed and it was almost impossible for him to recover. Thus, he has lost his eyesight completely and cannot move freely because of brain paralysis. He learnt to talk when he was 5; his mother gave up her job and chose to work at home in order to care for Yen Cheng and help their financial situation. Parents bring him to Taichung for acupuncture and rehabilitation sessions two days a week after school. He has not lost optimistic nature because of his disabilities; he always has big laughs. Sometimes, parents are worried about his future and where he is going next. However, his strength and optimism have encouraged his parents. He finds courage in music. In various music competitions, he was a very young champion. On June 9, 2006, a “Chang Yen-Cheng Music Concert” was held in Taichung County harbor district Art Center to perform music instruments that he was specially good at such as piano, violin and accordion.
Magical Blessings from God --- Music Talent
      Yen-Cheng often cried and made noises when he was little; strangely, he would calm down whenever he heard music. His mother noticed his music talent and gave him a special birthday gift --- an electronic piano --- when he was three. In addition to encourage him to live an active life, it also helped him to start a difficult and splendid music journey. During this period, he spent a lot of time on the piano to enjoy music and the absolute sonic senses; his parents therefore decided that he needed a piano teacher. Generally, teachers do not accept blind students and teach them how to play instruments due to reasons that they are not easy to communicate in class because of their disability. His parents did not give up and one year later a teacher was willing to teach him. Thus, his wish finally came true. Because of his brain paralysis condition and lack of coordination, the learning process was full of difficulty. He was not discouraged by it; on the other hand, he spent more energy on practice yet the progress was limited. Until he met teacher Chen Wei-chi, his skills greatly improved according to the customized curriculum teacher Chen designed.
      Because of blindness and brain paralysis, Yen-Cheng has a learning process more difficult compared with the other kids'. He cannot play instruments by reading music scores. He needs to repeatedly listen to the entire song, memorize it and then play the beautiful melody smoothly using both hands. In order to overcome the inconvenience brought to him by the disabilities of his body, he has to practice constantly for learning the magnificent finger skills and violin bow skills and even for carrying the heavy accordion. He has to practice one hundred times when the others need only ten times. He can get one part of return when he gives ten parts of hardworking; yet he is never frustrated or disappointed. Everyday constant and repeated practice composes a happy life suite for him.
Children with multiple disabilities can still give back to the society through music!!
      Yen-Cheng is a student with multiple disabilities. During his development, he has had assistance and encouragement from many people in addition to the love and support from his family; therefore, he expresses his gratitude by giving back the society what he specializes in music. After school, he is often invited by school and organizations for a music performance such as stage performance in schools to encourage students, in club meetings to express thanks to social organization or local music festival events to share and enjoy the beauty of music. He also was invited to Feng y uan Hospital and Zhong Shan Medical University Hospital of Rehabilitation to perform for their patients, hoping that beautiful music would alleviate their suffering. In November 2005, he had a role in movie “Butterfly” directed by Chang Tso-chi. Although he was sick and disabled, he always smiled to welcome everyday; his music and joy were in every corner of the world.
Brilliant and Honorable Music Presentation of Hope
      His body coordination is affected by brain paralysis so it is physically difficult for him to play instruments; his skills have greatly improved since he had Teacher Chen Wei-chi who patiently designed a customized curriculum especially for him. Ever since he won the first place in Boyinmaoshi Piano Contest in 1999, he has regularly participated in National Handicapped Music Contest two to three times every year and has outstanding results. In 2002, he won the second place in Praque National Music Contest, a competition for non-blind contestants, the first place in 2006 National Handicapped Music Contest finals Piano Youth Group, special award in 2008 “The 12 th International Chinese Chopin Piano Contest” and two champions in Taipei City Blind Music Cultural and Educational Foundation Music Contest Piano and Western Music Group.
      In addition to piano, he also learns to play violin and accordion. He has to spend a lot of time to overcome the difficulty and learn bow skills. His courage and constant practice have won him the first place in 2005 National Handicapped Music Contest Violin Youth Group. He started to learn accordion from school principle Chen Chung-Hsiu since 4 th grade in elementary school. He, weighing 26 kg ., has to carry approximately 6.5 kg accordion, a real burden for him; yet, he conquers obstacles one by one because of his devotion to music and collects 16 music presentations in a CD album. A charity concert in Taichung County Cultural Center on August 3, 2007 was held for Chang Yen-Cheng piano, accordion and violin performance.

Spiritual Hands, Clever Ears.
      It is a touching and beautiful picture the way he looks when he plays piano, violin, or accordion. Competition is not his final goal on the journey of music although he has received countless awards. Music, a most cherished subject, is his life. His biggest wish is to become a musician so he can enjoy playing piano as much as he wants in the world of music to present the glory of life!
      In addition to the love for music, he is able to use computer on document management, internet broadcasting news, data search on websites and instant communication online with friends to discuss schoolwork. He can still enjoy a spectacular life with his hands and ears. He is full of hopes for his future. He wants to go abroad for further education and continues his pursuit for self achievement and breakthrough in music. Moreover, he wants to accomplish his dreams and communicate with people through his music.