12-year-old hearing-impaired musician in tune with Vancouver culture Father and son team Romeo and Alexander Boar release The Vancouver Song

Feb 2018 CBC News

Romeo & Alexander BoarTo raise awareness about speech and hearing disabilities — and to celebrate their love for Vancouver — Romeo and Alexander Boar have released The Vancouver Song

Vancouver is known for the diversity of its cuisine, the vibrance of its culture scene and the scenic beauty of its naturals wonders. Summing all those qualities up in a one song would be tricky, but that's what Alexander Boar, 12, and his father Romeo Boar, 53, set out to do with The Vancouver Song. Inspired by their love for Vancouver, Alexander and Romeo co-wrote the song together — an accomplishment all the more impressive since Alexander was born deaf.

He received a cochlear implant when was three and began to learn speech and language. Later in Alexander's life, Romeo bought a synthesiser with the hope that Alexander would become curious about music. "We contemplated piano but I didn't want to force him, it would have been the last thing I wanted to do," said Romeo. He came from a musical family — his father and sister are both violin players — and he wanted his son to experience the joy that can come from composing.
"The idea was to inspire Alex, to find ways to introduce him to music.” The idea worked, and Alexander now has two years of piano lessons under his belt. "It was frustrating," said Alexander, speaking about his first days at the piano. "But it's a great experience and I do really enjoy piano."

Since the father and son duo love outdoor activities in and around Vancouver, they chose to celebrate the city in their song. Also, they say the song will raise awareness to the difficulties faced by children with hearing or speech disabilities. Through trial and error, The Vancouver Song became more coherent and musically sound. Working closely with the Burnaby, B.C. music production company Digital Sound Magic, the Boars turned their song into what it is today.

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