8-Year-Old Violinist Excels Despite Hand Disability

How often do we come across situations in our daily lives where we just shake our heads and decide we can't do something? Typically, we have the luxury of this choice, but for some people, "can't" is not an option. Meet Nickie Alarie, age 8, who was born with a hand deformity which significantly limits her use of this "small" hand to a low range of capability. But don't think for a minute that she considers her condition an obstacle.


Nickie is from a small town in Ontario, Canada, goes to school, plays with friends, plays soccer, rides horses, plays the violin and loves to bake with her mom. Her disability does not stop her from doing what she wants and excelling at it. For about 3 years she has been playing violin, which was made possible when some bio-mechanic specialists designed a custom device that allows her to attach the bow to her small arm and draw it back and forth to play the notes.

Paule Barsalou, Nickie's violin teacher, is inspired by her determination. "Nicky is always the driving force in the learning," she explained. "She never gives up and is not afraid to repeat things over and over again. When there is an obstacle, she just figures a way to work around it."

Watch and admire Nickie's grit as she takes on the world, not worried about what she can't do, but driven to show what she CAN do!

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