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Hearing colour, seeing sound

(11 Posts)
MiceElf Sat 20-Oct-12 14:58:35

As I was reading the thread about people's favourite composers and some of the music was running through my head, I wondered if anyone has the same experience as I do.

When I listen to music - or words - I see in my mind the colours and patterns they make like a piece of woven fabric. At the minute I'm listening to a guitar piece on Radio 3 and the it's a deep sunflower gold with silver thread through it. Likewise every word or name I hear has its own colour. And numbers have a gender. I have no idea why, but anyone I have shared this with thinks I am completely mad.

annodomini Sat 20-Oct-12 15:02:37

Is that what's called kinaesthesia? There are loads of links on Google.

Ana Sat 20-Oct-12 15:07:12

We had a thread about this on here - or it might just have been a topic which came up in the middle of a thread! There were quite a few of us who had similar stories. I see every day of the week as a different colour, and the months of the year.

absentgrana Sat 20-Oct-12 15:13:30

I thought it was called synesthesia but may very well be wrong. Does anyone else in your family have this condition? Isn't it supposed to be genetically caused? It is very difficult to imagine how you see things but, of course, it must seem completely natural to you – well, it is completely natural to you. I do know a child who sees sounds and hears colours and I find conversations with him fascinating. I think the painter Kandinsky also had a similar kind of perception.

annodomini Sat 20-Oct-12 15:16:52

You are right, absent - wonder what I was thinking of?

MiceElf Sat 20-Oct-12 15:21:36

It's good to know I'm not alone! I remember getting very cross with my mother when I insisted at the age of four that next year I would be seven, not because I couldn't count but because five and six were only for boys.

As far as I know no one else has this condition, neither has anyone else I have spoken to, do if it is genetic it must have skipped a generation or two. My children think I'm odd too.

Grannyknot Sat 20-Oct-12 16:42:53

MiceElf Oliver Sacks writes about it in his book Musicophilia - Tales of Music and the Brain (with case studies) so you are not alone.

Mishap Sat 20-Oct-12 16:46:29

Denise Leigh, the wonderful blind soprano who won Operatunity, has this. She talks very eloquently about it - I have had the privilege of meeting her on many occasions. It is lovely to think that, in the absence of sight, she has this other dimension to her music-making.

absentgrana Sat 20-Oct-12 18:17:56

MiceElf That your children think you are odd is no indication of anything. In my experience, virtually all children over the age of eight think their mothers are odd.

MiceElf Sat 20-Oct-12 21:35:14

Grannyknot thanks for the link. Absent, good point. When they were teenagers and said that I embarrassed them, I said it was pay back time for when they had embarrassed me as children.

AlieOxon Sun 21-Oct-12 10:30:22

I must remember that one! Like if I sing in the street.....

I hear the words when I read print.