In Tuesday’s (6/29) Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Richard Yeakley writes, “If you met Samuel Boutris, you would not assume he is a musician. He was born without a left ear and has a slight misalignment of the jaw. But this Fort Worth 19-year-old recently gained acceptance to the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music, a conservatory in Philadelphia where he will continue his clarinet education. … Boutris has suffered the effects of Goldenhar syndrome, a congenital defect that usually involves deformities of the face. … For many with Goldenhar, the consequences are merely cosmetic, but for a musician, missing an ear poses obvious challenges. ‘When I was learning, I could not actually hear if I was off-pitch. My teacher would intentionally play off [key] and I had to feel it,’ Boutris said. … His musical training began in sixth-grade band. At age 13, he won a chance to play with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra at Concerts in the Garden. He has performed with the Fort Worth Youth Orchestra and competed in the Buffet Crampon International Clarinet Competition.”

Posted June 29, 2010