Absolute pitch or perfect pitch is a rare auditory phenomenon that enables a person to identify and recreate a musical note with no other notes for reference. Imagine that you are eating a dish and you are able to taste and identify separately every single ingredient used to make that dish in each mouthful. That is exactly what listening to music feels like to a person with absolute pitch. They have the ability to identify every single note they hear in music. Invariably they can name the musical note we hear on a car honk or a door creak. Researchers estimate the occurrence of this phenomenon to be 1 in 10,000 people. Western music composers like Mozart had perfect pitch. When 14 year old Mozart was visiting Rome he heard the piece ‘Miserere’ by Italian composer Gregorio Allegri during the Wednesday service. Later that day, he wrote it down entirely from memory with very few corrections. The sacred piece was not allowed to be copied and copying down ‘Miserere’ was punishable by excommunication.  Young Mozart made an illegal copy with his absolute pitch.

Watch students at CMH demonstrate absolute pitch


Do you have absolute pitch?? Take the test and let us know!!