A savant is someone profoundly learned-- a genius! The savant can be a genius in a number of different subjects, but two men visiting Sioux Falls have incredible stories about how they acquired their musical abilities. Derek Amato and Tony DeBlois are truly phenomenal and are ready to wow you at their concert at the Orpheum Theater in Sioux Falls Friday evening.
Derek Amato was injured about a decade ago when he jumped into a pool to catch a football and hit his head in the shallow. He said although he didn't have any brain bleeding, when he woke up a few days later, he was seeing black and white blocks swirling around-- he could now see sounds. And when he stepped up to a piano, he suddenly knew how to play it like someone who had practiced their entire life. Amato says he has what's called acquired savant syndrome, where a person suffers a brain injury and has sudden genius abilities.
Tony DeBlois has been playing piano for 33 years since he was just two years old. DeBlois is also a musical savant; although he is blind and has autism, he's able to play any song you could ask just from his memory.
The two will be on a 30-day tour through South Dakota and around the country. Friday, Oct. 14, Amato and DeBlois will be playing a concert with some local musicians at the Orpheum Theater in Sioux Falls at 7 p.m. For more information, click here.
For more information about Tony DeBlois, visit his website here.
For more information about Derek Amato, visit his Facebook page here.