The story of Chapman
Chapman, an extraordinary 12-year-old blind pianist, has embarked on an incredible journey since his birth. Born in Hong Kong and currently residing in London, Chapman faces a unique challenge as he was born with a rare and undiagnosed genetic disease. This condition is so rare that it does not have any matching in the Hong Kong and United Kingdom databases. The medical experts in Hong Kong have identified the condition as bearing similarities to Norrie disease, although there are distinct differences that make Chapman’s case elusive to a definitive diagnosis.
Chapman’s condition resulted in his being born blind, and he has faced various challenges throughout his life, including speech, learning difficulties and having autism symptoms etc. However, despite the absence of a clear diagnosis and the array of challenges he faces, Chapman’s spirit remains unyielding. Music, in particular, holds a profound significance in his life. It is as if music was his calling, as he shares his birthday, the 21st of June, with the World Music Day, making the connection even more special.
Music has always been a driving force in Chapman’s life, and his passion for it remains unwavering. His musical journey began with self-taught renditions of “It’s a Small World” on a toy piano, inspired by a visit to Disneyland. From there, Chapman’s musical abilities flourished. At the tender age of 11, he achieved an exceptional distinction in the ABRSM Grade 8 examination, showcasing his remarkable talent and dedication, making the impossible possible.
Last summer, Chapman held his first Piano Solo Recital at the Westminster Music Library, where he mesmerized the audience with his skill and emotional expression. He actively engages in numerous performances, lending his talents to support charitable causes and spreading his can-do spirit through his music. Chapman’s inspiring story have garnered recognition, resulting in scholarships and a nomination as a candidate for the Hong Kong Spirit Award in 2021.
Chapman’s story serves as a powerful source of inspiration for those who face difficulties in their own lives and work. Despite the challenges posed by his rare disease, he has not let it define him or limit his potential. Chapman’s unwavering passion, determination, and musical talent showcase the resilience of the human spirit and the boundless possibilities that can be achieved with the right support and opportunities. By sharing Chapman’s remarkable journey, we hope to inspire others within the rare disease community and beyond.
In the video below, The Amber Trust showcased an extraordinary musical moment featuring Chapman during his solo recital debut in 2022. The Amber Trust is a charity dedicated to supporting blind and visually impaired children in their music learning journeys, and Chapman is one of the beneficiaries of this remarkable organization.