Teen Violinist To Underscore Effects Of Music On Autism

Jan Larsson violin

Jan Larsson violin

Not long ago, Peter Ohring realized he had become second fiddle.

“He’s much more talented than I am,” Ohring, a New Fairfield resident, said of his son, Isaac, 16, who has been playing violin since he was in third grade. “He surpassed me several years ago.”

The elder Ohring picked up the instrument 20 years ago, when he was in his early 30s. A few years later, he watched Isaac become immersed in music.

“From an early age, he showed a passion for listening to music,” said Ohring, who teaches new media at Purchase College . “We knew he would love music. He actually started playing piano before violin.”

“Initially, I was hesitant to get him involved with the violin,” Ohring said. “I thought it might be too much. It can be a difficult instrument. But, he took to it pretty quickly.”

Ohring noted the common belief that there is the right instrument for every person — they just have to find it. “I think the violin is that instrument for him.”

The proof is in Isaac’s playing.

This high-functioning autistic teen, a 10-grader at New Fairfield High School , serves as first violin with the Danbury Community Orchestra , with which has been playing since he was in eighth grade. He also performs with his father in the Not Ready for Prime Time Klezmer band. He plays piano, composes music and sings with his school’s chorus.

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