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Mishpacha Junior Speaks to Meir Barbi

Rhona Lewis

Meir Barbi is a one-man band player. He calls his band Sameach leSameach. He plays at simchahs and makes people dance and smile till the corners of their mouths are glued upwards. He does this even though he can’t see them dancing and smiling. You see, Meir Barbi is blind.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

playing the fluteMishpacha Junior: Hello, Mr. Barbi. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Meir Barbi: I live in Modiin, in central Israel, with my wife and three beautiful children. Although I was born blind, I am a musician. My handicap hasn’t stopped me from achieving my dreams. Of course I can’t ignore my blindness, but I never let it become the issue of my life.


MJ: When did your parents realize you couldn’t see?

Meir Barbi: I was diagnosed as blind when I was a baby of six months. It was hard for my family and siblings — I’m the fifth in a family of six children — to accept this. Since I could see a tiny bit, they kept asking me if I could see this or that and trying to prove I could see. Netivot, where I was born, didn’t have the facilities to deal with blind children, so I only started kindergarten when I was four, accompanied by my older brother David. I was different in other ways, too: I have a good memory and I was able to remember every detail that the teacher taught — right down to the tones she used!

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