Among those remarkable people who are blind since childhood, but who go on to accomplish great things, should be recognized the Spanish composer, Joaquín Rodrigo (1901-1999). Blinded by diphtheria at age 3, he became a virtuoso pianist and composer of classical music, elevating the classical guitar into the concert repertoire with such popular pieces as the Concierto de Aranjuez , and the Fantasía para un gentilhombre . Composed in Braille, his music had to be transcribed before it could be performed. In 1991, the King of Spain awarded him the noble, hereditary, and inspired title of Marquis of the Gardens of Aranjuez.
Submitted by Ron Fishman of the Cogan Ophthalmic History Society