She wanted a violin teacher who saw her hearing loss as an ability, not a disability.

Abigel Szilagyi is originally from California. When she started taking private violin lessons at age 14, her teacher, Danielle Belen, said that she never even noticed her hearing loss until Abigel's mom told her about it.

Belen has worked at the University of Michigan's School of Music since 2014, and Abigel was accepted to the school two years later. She moved to Ann Arbor in 2016. She says that she was inspired to go to U of M because of Belen; she wanted somebody who understood her disability.

She uses hearing aids, which come in and out, during her lessons so she can hear her teacher. She relies on gestures, vibrations and muscle memory while playing. She hopes to start a music program for kids with disabilities when she graduates.

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